Cloise Noggle Prefers Jail to Paying City Tax

From the Toledo Blade:

Tax Dodger Doesn’t Want Out Of Jail

Offender Begins 35-Day Stretch To Protest Law

A night on a workhouse bunk failed to shake Cloise W. Noggle, 231 University Blvd., from his stand that he preferred jail to payment of the city’s payroll-income tax.

He said that he was “perfectly willing to get another jail sentence to avoid paying taxes.”

Mr. Noggle, 50-year-old typewriter repairman who began a 35-day term after refusing to pay a fine of $100 and costs for failure to file a city tax return, displayed the same calmness he did yesterday when he informed Municipal Judge Homer A. Armey of his decision.

“I’ve been preparing for this for three years,” he said. “I’m surprised it took this long.”

Confers With Hirsch

Earlier in the day he conferred with William Hirsch, workhouse superintendent.

“I tried to persuade him to pay his fine and get out of here,” Mr. Hirsch reported. “This is no place for a man like him, but he wouldn’t budge.”

He asked for no special privileges, Mr. Hirsch reported. Mr. Noggle spent the morning behind a lawn mower as a part of the toughening up process for regular farm work.

His only complaint was against the black prison coffee.

Makes Example Of Self

Admitting he was trying to make an example of himself, Mr. Noggle asserted he did not like the way votes are counted or taxes administered.

“The whole set-up is wrong,” he said.

“Let the people who voted these taxes dig that out of the book so many of them have discarded; it’s all in there,” he declared, with an obvious reference to the Bible.

Mr. Noggle further admitted he wished to get publicity for his stand in the hope of influencing others to take the same attitude.

If Enough Refuse

“If enough of us refuse to pay taxes, the people will straighten this thing out,” he said.

Mr. Noggle said he reached his decision on taxes three years ago and has paid none since.

Mr. Hirsch said he planned to talk to Mr. Noggle again after he had spent a few more nights on a prison bunk.

I had a hard time finding anything else about Cloise W. Noggle or the motivation for his resistance. A name like Cloise Noggle stands out like a sore thumb in searchable databases, but he seems to have left little trace. Here’s another article from ’s Toledo Blade:

Pay Tax Dodger Prefers Jail To $100 Court Fine

Money Misused By City Heads, Offender Says

Pleading guilty in Municipal Court to the charge of failure to file a city payroll-income tax return for , C.W. Noggle, 231 University Blvd., was fined $100 and costs by Judge Homer A. Ramey. Mr. Noggle said he would serve out the fine in the Workhouse.

Mr. Noggle, 50-year-old operator of a typewriter and adding machine repair and service shop at his home, became the first Toledo person to be fined for failure to submit a return since the payroll-income tax ordinance was passed in .

He was one of two persons who appeared in Municipal Court today to answer summonses for failure to file returns on wages or net profits earned in . Seven, scheduled to come before the Court today, did not have to appear after they promised to submit returns and pay the tax. The cases of two others were continued.

Doesn’t Intend To Pay

After being assessed the fine, Mr. Noggle told the Court he did not intend to pay it. He will have to spend 35 days in the workhouse. He was taken there this afternoon.

When Mr. Noggle’s case was called, Louis Yough, police prosecutor, asked him how he pleaded.

“I plead guilty; my time is yours,” the typewriter repairman answered unconcernedly.

Judge Ramey appeared a bit perplexed. Earl Goodyear, assistant law director and deputy tax commissioner, stood silent. He had prepared the affidavits charging failure to file returns.

Court Asks Explanation

Judge Ramey then said: “I don’t understand you. What do you mean?”

Mr. Noggle replied:

“You have lived off me. Now I’m going to live off you.”

Judge Ramey explained that the citizens of Toledo had voted the tax on themselves and that he personally had had nothing to do with it. He added that he merely was the judge on the bench.

Recommendation Asked

The judge then turned to Mr. Goodyear and asked him if he had any recommendation. Mr. Goodyear said he understood in advance that Mr. Noggle was not going to file a return or pay the tax and that he realized he would have to take the consequences.

Judge Ramey then said it was thus indicated to him that the defendant does not plan to file a return or pay the tax. He turned to the journal and entered the $100 fine. The costs amounted to $3.70.

After Mr. Noggle had been taken to the Safety Bldg. bull pen to await transportation, he was asked why he had refused to file or pay.

Explaining that he had paid the 1946 tax, Mr. Noggle answered that he felt the City Government had misused the tax. He said that instead of paying off the city’s indebtedness, city officials had increased the debt.

“Anyhow,” he added, “too many people are living off the taxpayers.”

John J. McCarthy, city law director, said that the $100 fine assessed against Mr. Noggle does not relieve him of the duty of filing a return and paying the tax. The law director said the city also could file a civil suit against him to collect the 1 per cent tax.

A follow-up article noted that Noggle was released a few days early “for good behavior and because he has done a fine job as our tool master and milk man.”

The following year, the state supreme court unanimously ruled that the municipal income taxes of cities like Toledo were constitutional (the constitutionality question didn’t seem to be a concern of Noggle, but there was a parallel court battle by some objectors to the tax).