Finance Department

Phone: (216) 475-1504
Fax: (216) 475-3807
Finance Director: Barbara Biro

The Finance Department is responsible for developing reports, issuing purchase orders, employee payroll and many other financial functions.

The department monitors the annual budget to ensure that expenditures will not exceed the budget, as authorized by Council. As the budget is developed, the Department is called upon by Council to provide a breakdown of costs so Council can decide how to allocate City resources.

Local taxes are processed by the Regional Income Tax Authority (RITA). Forms are available at the Finance Department; the income tax rate in Garfield Heights is 2% with a 100% credit (up to 2%).

The City of Garfield Heights has enacted Chapter 183 – Municipal Income Tax in order to comply with the sweeping changes that the State Legislature has enacted which is commonly known as House Bill 5.  Therefore, Chapter 183 of the City’s codified ordinances becomes effective January 1, 2016 and Chapter 181 will stay in effect for all tax years prior to December 31, 2015.  For more information, please click here.

For more information, please visit:

Regional Income Tax Agency launches state-wide digital taxpayer notification initiative

Brecksville, January14, 2020 - The Regional Income Tax Agency, commonly known as RITA, is beginning a new initiative to notify taxpayers of the upcoming tax filing deadline.

Throughout its history, RITA has typically used direct mail postcards to notify those who live and work in RITA municipalities of the April 15 filing deadline. This year, RITA is launching a digital advertising initiative to specifically reach taxpayers within those 300 plus municipalities, which saves the organization time, saves taxpayers money and helps RITA do its part to save the environment.

“With more people spending time online, the timing was right for us as an organization to adapt and adopt a digital-first mentality when it comes to our communication methods,” Don Smith,RITA Executive Director, said. “And where traditional direct mail allows for just one communication per taxpayer, this digital initiative will allow for multiple touch points with each taxpayer. This is just one of the many ways we’re bringing new efficiencies to the taxpayer through digital solutions,” Smith added.

Additionally, RITA also updated and streamlined its MyAccount platform, which allows taxpayers the ability to electronically file their taxes, update their accounts, send and receive securemessages, make payments and much more all online.

The digital taxpayer notification campaign will begin January 15, 2020.

To learn more about RITA, visit For more information, please click here. For media inquiries, please contact Adrienne Sabo at 330-707-2088 or

Assistance for Delinquent Property Taxes 

Assistance is available for people unable to pay their property taxes through the Restoring Stability: Save the Dream Ohio Initiative. It is necessary that homeowners have a valid hardship issue to qualify for the program, which is being administered by the Ohio Housing Finance Agency. 

For information or registration, visit or call 888-404-4674. 


Obtaining a Birth or Death Record

The Vital Statistics department closed in 2009 in Garfield Heights.  The information is now with the City of Cleveland.  Their number is 216-664-2317.  They will be able to assist you in obtaining a copy of your certificate.  For more information, please click here.



From left, 2013 former Finance Director Ron Tomola,
Financial Planning and Supervision
Commission Chairperson Sharon Hanrahan,
Mayor Vic Collova and State Auditor Dave Yost.

Garfield Heights Released from Fiscal Emergency

Having met all the objectives of its financial recovery plan, Garfield Heights was released from fiscal emergency status by Ohio Auditor Dave Yost.

“You are the unsung heroes of local government,” Yost said during a special meeting of the Garfield Heights City Council and the Financial Planning and Supervision Commission on Thursday, Sept. 19.

“This day wouldn’t be possible without the sacrifices of both the citizens of Garfield Heights and city employees,” Yost said. “These choices weren’t easy, but they’ve put the city back on the right track. We continue to face economic headwinds in our state, but the task ahead will be far easier than the one behind you.”

Garfield Heights was placed in fiscal emergency on October 14, 2008 due to deficits totaling $1,869,779. To eliminate its fiscal emergency status, the city reduced staff by approximately 40 full-time positions through attrition to save $2 million annually. Administrative employees took a 30 percent pay reduction which saves the city $600,000 annually. And, Garfield Heights also instituted new fees and increased existing fees to generate additional revenue.

“This is something we worked very hard to achieve,” said Mayor Vic Collova. “Employees and residents sacrificed a lot to get the city back into solid financial shape.”

Former Finance Director Ron Tomola said personnel cuts that included downsizing departments, administrative pay cuts and union concessions helped lift the city from fiscal emergency. 

The Garfield Heights fiscal emergency was declared following a fiscal analysis by the state auditor’s Local Government Services office. Once a city is placed into fiscal emergency, a commission is appointed by the state to help the city regain financial stability. The commission is responsible for approving a plan that details solutions for eliminating the emergency and strategies to avoid future deficits.

A full copy of the fiscal emergency termination can be accessed at

Click here to view a press release from the auditor’s office regarding the Garfield Heights fiscal emergency release.

Click here to view the “Recognition of Fiscal Integrity” document presented to the city by Auditor David Yost.