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Filing deadline extended for some municipal taxes

Regional Income Tax Agency handles tax filings for Logan County villages

BRECKSVILLE (AP) — An agency that coordinates municipal tax filing around Ohio has extended the deadline to file until Monday after what it calls “unprecedented demand.”

The Regional Income Tax Agency in Brecksville said its website and phone system have been overwhelmed with hits and calls from last-minute filers.

RITA, which handles income tax collections for several Logan County villages but not the city of Bellefontaine, has answered more than 200 phone calls an hour and helped more than 100 taxpayers an hour in person at its office in northeast Ohio since midnight Tuesday, according to a notice from the agency. RITA administers tax programs for 240 communities in Ohio.

“The agency is further continuing to expand access to meet this extraordinary request for contact,” the notice said.

The tax agency said it experienced an “unprecedented demand” for online services, including the electronic filing of municipal income taxes in dozens of communities across Ohio.

Earlier this year, the agency announced it would no longer routinely mail paper forms and recommended that taxpayers file online, call for forms or download forms from its website.

The problem is so many people waited until the last minute to file, said Steven Presley, treasurer of the tax agency’s board. Several suburban Cleveland leaders expressed concern with the situation and said extending the deadline was the right thing to do, the Northeast Ohio Media Group reported.

“Anytime someone is not able to file their taxes when they are due, it’s an issue we should be concerned about,” Westlake Mayor Dennis Clough said.

In central Ohio, Ashville resident Kyle Clark got up at 3:30 a.m. Tuesday, logged onto RITA’s website, paid his taxes and went back to bed. “No problems,” he told the Columbus Dispatch.

Some Columbus suburbs, including Gahanna, Hilliard and Grandview Heights, had already said they would delay penalties against those who tried unsuccessfully to file with RITA by the Tax Day deadline.

“We want our taxpayers to be happy,” Greg Tantari, deputy finance director in Hilliard, told the Dispatch.

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