SALEM - With the first six months collected, the city income tax receipts are 3.31 percent higher than last year's halfway mark.
"I think that's good and that shows we're ahead of target for what we budgeted," city Income Tax Administrator Fred Pamer said Monday.
City Treasurer Bob Tullis reported the totals for income tax receipts through June to city council last week. The total as of June 29 was $2,421,786. The total after six months in 2011 was $2,344,285 for a difference of $77,500 and a 3.31 percent increase.
The city budgeted for income tax receipts of $3.9 million for this year, with 62 percent of the receipts needed to reach that total already collected.
According to Pamer, the numbers show there have been wage increases over the year and business profits are holding steady. In a month-to-month comparison, the income tax receipts have fluctuated.
The city has a 1 percent income tax and Tullis noted that all Salem residents 18 years old or older are required to file an income tax return.
"What if they have no income?" Councilman Jeff Cushman asked.
Tullis said they still have to file and explain their situation, whether they're unemployed or retired. If a resident hasn't filed, he suggested they come into the city tax office to take care of it.
"Sooner or later, we're going to find out about it," he said.
Pamer said there are boxes on the forms where a tax filer can check off their situation, including if they have no income. The fine for not filing city income tax is $25 per year that the income tax return should have been filed. If a tax is due, they'll have to pay that tax along with any late fees and penalties for interest.
He explained if it's a normal mistake, they try to work with people to keep the cost low.
People not filing happens. According to Pamer, many taxpayers electronically file their federal and state returns and then forget about their local return, which must be filed manually, either through the mail or in person.
Anyone with questions should call the city income tax office at 330-332-4241, option two, or stop in at the office on the second floor of city hall.
Mary Ann Greier can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org