Unwanted 'tax' gifts will cause exodu...

Unwanted 'tax' gifts will cause exodus from county

There are 25 comments on the The Indianapolis Star story from Dec 30, 2007, titled Unwanted 'tax' gifts will cause exodus from county. In it, The Indianapolis Star reports that:

Marion County taxpayers got another unexpected Christmas "present" from the outgoing, can't-take-a-hint mayor and City-County Council in the form of yet another tax increase -- this time a new "recording fee ...

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What Exodus

United States

#21 Dec 30, 2007
Educated Voter wrote:
<quoted text>
You're clearly not Ann Coulter. She is smart enough to realize that Republicans CUT taxes (as Bush as done several times), while bleeding-heart libs will tax, spend, tax and spend more. They'll use the money to keep people who have already been on welfare their entire lives on welfare for the rest of them! Obviously, the war is a much better expenditure. Don't insult Ann Coulter by using her name.
Don't worry about Ann, she slings so much mud that she won't notice if a bit gets on her. And all those Bush tax cuts don't count unless there are corresponding cuts in spending. All he has done is put of the day of reckoning.
Chris

San Jose, CA

#22 Dec 30, 2007
Tom in TENN wrote:
<quoted text> Chris, you are an idiot. You have missed the point about the recording fee. It's another tax, you moron. Taxes nickle & dime people to death. Just look at you utility bills and wittness all the hidden taxes & charges. The telephone bill. Now there's a place with all kinds of taxes & charges. You cell phone bill. Gasoline costs. It's a constant tax, tax, tax on the people, and fools like you can't see it because you're a liberal democrat fruit basket.
Tom, YOU are the idiot--and the best part is you proved it through your own words.

Anyone like you who has to start off their argument by calling someone else names just for writing a well-thought out comment which they happen to disagree with proves they have no strong counter argument to make. Tom, first-grade is calling and they would like for you to repeat.

In any event, I didn't not deny that the new recording fee is a tax--please point to my comments where you think I said that--I didn't.

Also, I know little taxes add up to a lot. However, the new recording fee is a special-purpose dedicated source of revenue to create a permanent fund for addressing the very serious problem of homelessness in Marion County. It is not being frittered away in the General Fund and it is desperately needed. Moreover, it is not an undue burden on the taxpayers. It is a small infrequent tax which helps create a steady source of revenue to address a legitimate and serious need.

Also, sorry you think you know me so well, but I hate to break the news to you--I am NOT a liberal Democrat. Idealogical zealots like you are the only ones who think that anyone who doesn't spout your dogma must be a member of the extremist "other side."

In Indiana and in Marion County the issue is not "nickle and dime" taxes. The problem is the property tax system and the very significant property taxes which have hit many individuals of low to moderate means. These taxes primarily go to schools, public safety, and STATE-mandated welfare programs (meaning the state requires them, but passing the buck on funding them to local government). I agree government needs to spend public funds prudently; however, there are needs that MUST be addressed. The current property tax system is a an out-dated and unfair method of raising revenue to address these needs and it must be reformed. There are also savings that can be created by eliminating duplicative and unnecessary levels of government--to begin with, get rid of township government and most of the special taxing districts.

Finally, taxpayers need to decide what services they can reasonably afford to pay for through their taxes. I have a news flash for you--whenever services are cut the first people to cry are the same people like you that pitch a b*tch about being "nickled and dimed to death." Elected officials and voters need to be honest with themselves and admit that services cost money--and the higher level of services provided and the more services provided--the more money it costs. The hard choices are not just for elected officials to make, but also for the voters--it is not enough simply to shout "no new taxes." It is time for everyone to decide what sacrifices they will make in return for paying less taxes.
Chris

San Jose, CA

#23 Dec 30, 2007
Cry Me A River wrote:
<quoted text>
4. Not buying "cites (i.e., Indianapolis)have different and greater needs" and merit "special consideration" if you are talking about any form of State funding. New construction is expensive. Once those structures and infrastructures are built, the cost should go down because what you are talking about it maintenance. Sure, there comes a point where the structure and infrastructure needs to be replaced BUT that is a budgeting issue.(Hello, cities know that day will come - budget for it.) Part of Indianapolis' problem is that it spent maintenance money and infrastructure fees on other things, and now the bill is due. In addition, folks in rural areas pay (or should pay) less for government services because they pay for their own water and sewer (via wells and septic systems) and trash collection, among other things. The bottom line is that Indianapolis can cry a river all it wants about its fiscal woes, but no way should the State use State funds (collected from all Indiana residents) to bail MC/Indianapolis out, in particular when, despite their fiscal woes, Indianapolis still plans to hand over almost $50 Million in tax dollars to yet another private developer for yet another hotel.
Sir/Madam, sorry you don't "buy" my argument, but it is true. Cities do and always will have greater needs than suburban and rural areas. Now, I admit that Marion County has long been guilty of being penny-wise and POUND-foolish by deferring regular maintenance, etc. in order to avoid small and period tax increases and/or to divert funds to other purposes. However, at the end of the day, you are still talking about much older, much more utilized, and much more complex infrastructure than you find in the suburbs or rural areas--and it simply does and always will cost more money to maintain no matter how good the maintenance schedule is. Also, Marion County has a disproportionate amount of tax-exempt property--and much of it is heavily utilized by people living outside of Marion County--this is not fair.

I do not believe, nor have I argued for the state to "bail out" Marion County. However, the state needs to give Marion County the tools (through the ability to implement various local taxes, especially business taxes) to raise a larger share of revenue than suburban or rural areas. Also, the laws on tax-exempt property and state-owned property need to be changed. For example, IUPUI which eats up a huge amount of prime downtown real estate should pay "in lieu of" fees, as many universities in other areas do, to help make up for the lost revenue. I realize IUPUI brings alot of benefits to Indianapolis; however, the benefits do not justify the lost revenue to the city and county. If the state has to give IUPUI more money to pay the "in lieu of" fees, or students have to pay higher tuition, then so be it. Also, the numerous "non-profit" organizations need to start pulling their own weight. They do a lot of good locally, and on the state level and national level; however, this should not excuse them from paying for public services which they receive--they are receiving a "back door" public subsidy by being excused from paying most taxes and fees. If the public wants to pay for public policy think-tanks, religion, arts, shelters, etc.--then fine, follow the normal procedure of having such appropriations voted upon by elected officials.

Finally, I would add that your point about the 2008 budget being fixed doesn't explain why Ballard would say the local income tax hike is "here to stay." He didn't say "it's here to stay until next year's budget can be voted upon," he said its "here to stay," meaning its here to stay for the foreseeable future. At least there is money finally going to the unfunded public safety pension debt, which has been ballooning for the last 35 years.
the watcher

Indianapolis, IN

#24 Dec 30, 2007
MKNA Resident wrote:
As I said before: We're on the brink of leaving Marion Co. and we certainly would never buy a bigger house here (which -- once upon a time -- was our intention). Our next move will be the suburbs!
Hey! I just moved this fall to Hamilton Co and I highly recommend it. Should have done it years ago! I love it that Bart and his buddies have all been ousted but that won't entice me to move back! Marion Co is a black hole and I'm not sure a new mayor can change that?
MKNA Resident

Glenwood, IN

#25 Jan 7, 2008
the watcher wrote:
<quoted text>
Hey! I just moved this fall to Hamilton Co and I highly recommend it. Should have done it years ago! I love it that Bart and his buddies have all been ousted but that won't entice me to move back! Marion Co is a black hole and I'm not sure a new mayor can change that?
You may be right -- Marion Co. may already be too far gone for any new mayor to save. And, sadly, I'm not too impressed with the folks Ballard has chosen to lead the new administration. We'll see. We would consider Hamilton (Carmel) or Boone (Zionsville) counties.

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