Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

2 more public hearings scheduled for feedback on Cincinnati's residential tax abatement overhaul

Downtown Cincinnati skyline seen from Lower Price Hill.
Becca Costello
Downtown Cincinnati skyline seen from Lower Price Hill.

Cincinnati Council is hosting two public hearings to get feedback on proposed changes to the residential tax abatement program.

The program offers a property tax break for buildings with up to four housing units, but nearly all abatements go to single family homes. (A separate program regulates commercial tax abatements.)

Mayor Aftab Pureval introduced the measure that would reduce the value of abatements in the city's wealthiest neighborhoods, and increase value for most other neighborhoods. The measure was supposed to get a vote this week, but Council delayed action so they could do more community engagement.

RELATED: How Cincinnati's residential tax abatement program works, and how it could soon change

Vice Mayor Jan-Michele Lemon Kearney initially scheduled special sessions of her Healthy Neighborhoods Committee; those meetings are now considered "public engagement sessions" and not official committee meetings. CitiCable will not be in attendance to record or live stream the meetings.

"We've gotten a lot of good comments from the public here in City Hall, during the day during our Equitable [Growth and] Housing Committee meetings," Kearney said. "And we've decided we need to be out in the community as well so we can hear from people who haven't been able to come during the day."

LISTEN: Cincinnati's residential tax abatement program could change. Will it be more equitable?

Kearney says the Department of Community and Economic Development will give a presentation on "Tax Abatements 101," and council will discuss some of the concerns brought up by residents.

Council has already made several amendments to the proposed ordinance, adding bonus abatement value for properties that have a wheelchair-accessible bedroom and bathroom, bonuses for housing with two to four units, and even more bonuses for housing with more than one unit that is also located along a public transit corridor.

The ordinance is in the Equitable Growth and Housing Committee. Chair Jeff Cramerding has scheduled a special meeting Tuesday, March 21 at 12:30 p.m. with the purpose of voting on the measure; if it passes, it would be up for a final vote at Council's regularly meeting March 22.

Public meetings

Monday, March 13 from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. — Bethany House Services (4769 Reading Road)

Wednesday, March 15 from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. — Price Hill Recreation Center (959 Hawthorne Ave)

Local Government Reporter with a particular focus on Cincinnati; experienced journalist in public radio and television throughout the Midwest. Enthusiastic about: civic engagement, public libraries, and urban planning.