Thursday, July 26, 2007

Tom Henry on Property Taxes

The Henry campaign issued the following press release regarding property taxes. Henry's “Relief, Restructuring & Responsibility” plan is shown below:
Henry’s three-pronged “Relief, Restructuring & Responsibility” approach calls for the following components:

- A special session of the Indiana General Assembly requested by the governor to address the property tax issue without delay.

- A $288 million allocation from the budget surplus enacted by the General Assembly and applied to one year of residential property tax relief. That one year would give local units of government enough time to restructure their revenue streams to match their needs and circumstances. In 2005, state government diverted the Property Tax Replacement fund, the $288 million, from local government use to create a budget surplus. This was the first time in 20 years that this tactic has been used. The credit is a subsidy state government pays to localities to keep tax bills down.

- Reconsideration of the Hometown Matters legislation by the General Assembly. Without other items complicating the discussion, the General Assembly could focus solely on this crucial topic. The legislation was devised by the state’s municipal officials and was introduced during the last session.

Some of the key provisions of the Hometown Matters legislation are:

- Giving local governments the option to reduce property taxes through any combination of local sales tax, supplemental income tax, local innkeeper’s tax and local food and beverage tax.

- Allowing counties the ability to act first and make changes on a countywide basis. If the county did not act within a specified period of time, then the
other local units would be able to restructure for themselves.

- A commitment by Henry when Mayor to: 1) Cut costs, improve city services and make government more effective; 2) work collaboratively with other governmental entities to better achieve these goals; and 3) advocate aggressively on behalf of the city and all its citizens wherever decisions are made for the fair and equitable treatment of municipalities.

- Support for the bipartisan commission formed by the governor to examine and make recommendations on reforming and restructuring local government as a method to investigate the root causes of the state’s continuing property tax problems.

2 comments:

bud said...

I'm with Kelty: Cut It, Cap It, Make It Permanent! Or better yet, abolish property taxes. They are an abomination and we've repeatedly proven we can't be trusted with a property tax.

Jeff Pruitt said...

Bud,

I've done some analysis on Kelty's plan (which I'll post about in the near future) but it looks like his plan would reduce the county's property tax take by over 60% - where's the extra money gonna come from? While I'm all for responsible budgeting and taxation, Kelty's plan is a flat out impossibility...