Council votes to move city to next size category

Columbus City Council is moving ahead with plans to make Columbus a second-class city.

The council gave its first approval last night for the measure which would change some of the ways the city is governed. Under the second class designation, the city would add two members to the City Council, the elected clerk-treasurer would become an elected clerk, while the city would appoint a comptroller to assume oversight of the city finances.

Columbus has been eligible for the higher classification for more than 20 years, but remains the largest third class city in the state. As of July 1st, to qualify a city must have more than 34,000 residents. Columbus had just over 39,000 people as of the 2000 census and 50,474 as of 2020. The state is decreasing the size requirement from the long-standing 35,000.

If given its second and final approval, the change wouldn’t go into effect until January of 2024.