by Mark R. PotterRegional EditorAkron -- Summit County Council members have decided to take more time on an issue that could result in increased taxing of cigarettes and alcohol.The issue, which officials say would help fund the construction of a $170 million Major League Soccer stadium with a retractable roof in Macedonia, did not appear on Council's July 23 agenda as members said they were not prepared to make a decision."We're not even close," said Council President Nick Kostandaras, who represents the northern part of the county. "This is too big of a project for us to act too quickly on."Council originally thought a vote on whether to forward the tax to the Board of Elections for certification would come July 23, after its summer recess, but it will now stay in committee where details can be worked out, Councilors say. If Council approves the plan, voters will decide in November if they want the tax. The issue needs to be filed with the Board of Elections by its Aug. 23 deadline to make on the November ballot.The tax, if passed, is expected to generate around $5 million dollars a year for 20 years, would solely be used for the stadium.The stadium, which would include a retail complex, would be built on land east of state Route 8 in Macedonia and Northfield Center.Officials from the Wolstein Sports and Entertainment Group, who are behind the plan, say the stadium would result in the creation of 1,600 construction jobs and could bring as much as $12 billion dollars to the county over the next 30 years.The overall plan also calls for $120 million in private retail investment, $30 million for a medical campus and $7 million in hotel industry business to come to the region.The tax, company officials say, would include an additional 4.5 cents per pack of cigarettes, with alcohol getting taxed an additional $3 per gallon.Company President Paul Garofolo said the increase would be 4 cents on a bottle of beer, which equates to 24 additional cents for a six-pack. For a 5 ounce glass of wine, Garofolo said 13 cents would be added and average mixed drinks with one and one half ounces of liquor would range from 3 to 4 cents.Kostandaras also said some smokers have expressed opposition to the tax and see it as an additional burden to the statewide smoking ban, which began in May."I hear smokers say, 'You're putting more restrictions on us, but you still want our money,'" Kostandaras explained.At-Large Council member Pete Crossland said another issue with the plan is the consideration of other tax levies headed for the ballot like those for the Children Services Board and the Alcohol Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services Board."I think there's a question of how many new taxes can we really put on a ballot at the same time," Crossland said.Discussion on the issue is expected to take place at Council's next regularly scheduled committee meeting July 30 at 4:30 p.m. in the Ohio Building, 175 S. Main St., Akron.E-mail: mpotter@recordpub.comPhone: 330-688-0088 ext. 3154