Dayton has nearly double the population of Canton, but the two cities share many of the same struggles. Both have lost manufacturing jobs over the last two decades and experienced a steady decline in population. Poor performing school districts in both communities helped fuel a lament by city employees over forced residency. Only in Canton, city employees won.
City officials in Dayton aren’t willing to make that same concession. The Dayton City Commission sued the state in 2006, claiming a new law curtailing residency requirements violated the city’s home rule provision. The city lost its bid to have the law ruled unconstitutional in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court, but officials appealed. Should the city win that case, it would take a vote by the public to remove the residency rule from the city’s charter.