OTA Reacts to House Bill 33, the Operating Budget



OTA Reacts to House Bill 33, the Operating Budget

Blacklick, Ohio – The Ohio Township Association (OTA) commends the General Assembly on completing the biennial budget, House Bill 33 (HB 33), for FY 2024-2025. In HB 33, townships will see an increase in competitive bid thresholds from $50,000 to $75,000 with a yearly inflationary index, one of the OTA’s legislative priorities over the last few General Assemblies. The OTA is also happy to see funding for safety service grants, including revenue for MARCS radios.

The as-passed version of House Bill 33 also includes a provision permitting townships to use gas tax revenue to purchase a building, as current law only permits townships to build or maintain existing buildings to house road machinery and equipment. Also included in HB 33 and supported by the OTA is Senate Bill 91, which will require elected officials to take training on fraud, waste, and abuse of public funds.

The OTA strongly supports these provisions and thanks the General Assembly for their inclusion in the final version of House Bill 33.

The OTA was pleased that the General Assembly accepted a compromise amendment to the proposed zoning referendum process for townships. Originally put forward at 25%, the final version of HB 33 reduced the signature threshold for residents to challenge a township zoning decision to 15%. While this is still a significant increase from the long-standing law that set the threshold at 8%, the OTA is thankful the legislature accepted our compromise. Development is an important issue in Ohio, and we hope to continue conversations on township development and the zoning referendum process.

There are provisions included in House Bill 33 to which the OTA stands opposed.

The OTA is disappointed that HB 33 includes a provision that would exempt residential development groups from property taxes for up to eight years as they make improvements to the land. As property taxes primarily fund townships, this will have an adverse effect on township revenues and, ultimately, operations. The OTA is requesting Governor DeWine veto this provision.

The OTA was disappointed that the indigent burial fund was eliminated in this budget. The fund has been helpful for townships to offset this unfunded mandate placed on them.

When HB 33 is signed into law, significant changes are coming for Ohio townships. The OTA looks forward to continuing to work with the General Assembly and Governor DeWine to support and ensure the best interests of Ohio’s townships. 


The Ohio Township Association is a statewide organization dedicated to the promotion and preservation of township government in Ohio. The OTA was founded on June 28, 1928 and is organized in 87 Ohio counties. OTA has more than 5,200 active members, made up of trustees and fiscal officers from Ohio’s 1,308 townships, and more than 4,000 associate members.