Tuscarawas County, Ohio - The Tuscarawas County Auditor’s Office is reminding area businesses to reprogram to their cash registers before the sales tax increases on October 1.

During the May 8 primary election, Tuscarawas County voters approved a 0.5-percent temporary sales tax increase to fund improvements to the county’s 911 communications system. 

The increase is for two years and will change the total tax rate paid in Tuscarawas County from 6.75 percent to 7.25 percent. 

County Auditor Larry Lindberg says businesses will need to take appropriate steps to have their cash registered reprogrammed for the increase. 

“September 30th is a Sunday. The sales tax that a vendor charges would be at the 6.75 percent rate. However, effective Monday, October 1st, any sale that takes place will need to be charged with the 7.25 percent.”

The increase applies to any retail sale made in Tuscarawas County, and Lindberg says it will be up to each vendor to make sure they are collecting the appropriate amount of tax for each sale. 

“We want to make sure the vendors are aware of this now rather than later when they file their sales tax and find that the state’s charging them a higher rate than what they collected,” Lindberg says.

Of the new tax rate, 5.75 percent is allocated to the state, 1 percent is allocated to the county general fund, and the newly approved additional 0.5 percent is allocated to a 911 improvement fund.

Lt. Ryan Lawrence is the communications manager and 911 coordinator for the Tuscarawas County Sheriff’s Department. He explains that the new communications system was needed because the county’s current system will be reaching the end of its life on December 31.

“That doesn’t mean that it’ll shut down. What it means is Motorola will no longer support our system, so anytime we have a part break, they’ll have to look around and see if they have a part anywhere. They’re not going to make those parts anymore,” he explains.

Lawrence says Staley Technologies of New Philadelphia has been subcontracted by Motorola to handle the project and has already begun installing the new system.

“They’ve been going around to all of our tower sites and placing the new equipment in each tower site and getting it hooked up. Also, here in our 911 center, they’re putting new equipment in. They already starting installing the mobile radios that go into all of the fire trucks, police cars, ambulances, all those,” he says.

Lawrence says the new system should be operational by the first of the year.  

“Everything is right on schedule and looking good,” he says.

Stacey Carmany, Tusco TV

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