A group fighting Columbus' five percent ticket tax says it has collected enough petition signatures to put the tax before the voters.
The coalition of business owners called Advocates for Responsible Taxation is working to place on the ballot a city charter amendment that will allow voters to decide whether to pay the tax. Spokeperson and local attorney Bret Adams says the group has collected more than 18 thousand petition signatures to get the measure on the ballot. Just over 11 thousand signatures need to be validated by elections officials for the measure to proceed. Adams says a charter amendment gives a permanent solution to the public and would also check city council's conduct. Adams' group believes council rushed to approve the legislation last year in a process it sees as unfair. Council introduced and approved the tax after it and several stakeholders held and participated in multiple public hearings. The tax takes effect July 1st in two parts. One tax would fund arts in the region and apply to performances and events costing more than 10 dollars per ticket at venues with more than 400 seats. The other tax would apply only to Nationwide Arena-hosted events, with the revenue going mostly to arena maintenance and repairs.