Fed-up taxpayers aren't asking, they'...

Fed-up taxpayers aren't asking, they're demanding

There are 24 comments on the The Indianapolis Star story from Jan 14, 2008, titled Fed-up taxpayers aren't asking, they're demanding. In it, The Indianapolis Star reports that:

As a property owner in Johnson County, I was shocked when our property tax bill increased by $5,000 without notice last year.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at The Indianapolis Star.

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Indiana Post

Florence, KY

#1 Jan 14, 2008
Thanks for a super article outlining need to reduce Government jobs in Indiana.

Its never easy eliminating jobs of friends or asking friends to do their job as an elected official-just ask any Hurricane Katrina victim that may lost home and job and had to start all over again in new state at less pay.
ALSO FEDUP

Duncan, OK

#2 Jan 14, 2008
I have to disagree that 1% is more than enough. It is far too much. 1% of my assessed value (which I could never, ever sell my home for) is over 20% of my income. I do not live in a fancy house either. It is a 35 yr old, small wood frame house with 1 bath and no basement. No swimming pools, fireplaces, et. Just simple shelter yet over one dollar out of every five I earn goes to paying the tax and trying to keep my home. Since there is no end to raising the assessed value (it need not have any realtionship to reality) there is no end to the % of income that is stolen from us by the tax system. I realize that I can't stay here when I retire in 2 years as I will have even less money and the taxes will continue to go up. If I an lucky I will be able to sell my home for about 75% of the assessed value. I plan to move to a southern state with lower taxes and lower cost of living. I don't want to spend my 'golden years' eating cat food and wondering if I can keep my home for another year. I have some friends and relatives who plan to leave Indiana for the same reasons. We have just been taxed out of our homes.
Driver 1

Newport, KY

#3 Jan 14, 2008
So Mike, if the State takes school funding from your local property tax and gives it to another County (example Marion----just North of you). It is alright with you that instead of your schools being improved (adding to your homes value), another Counties schools will prosper at your expense as your Homes value goes into a decline. This is what Mitch is proposing.....is that what you really want? Instead of paying for one school system you will be paying for all of the School Corporations statewide. It ain't gonna be cheaper for you.....instead of property tax you will be paying other taxes, Income, Sales, Local, etc:.
Ron Thomas

Monon, IN

#4 Jan 14, 2008
Driver 1, you are correct and there are numerous people who are failing to realize this. To rephrase your point, the distribution formulas of the Sales / Income tax revenues isn't being preseented. Heck, they probably don't have a clue how they'll "spread the wealth". They just know they'll collect enough to replace existing levels which does nothing for tax reform. The future is what should concerns everyone.

ALL, I want to make one thing clear, Daniels has stated he opposes an increase in the State Income Tax percentage. This doesn't mean he opposes an increase in the local Income Tax (COIT or whatever is applied in your county). In fact, many at the state level last summer said the "locals" should increase this tax to offset and lower the Property Tax increases that still haven't hit the bills. So wait and see, they will push for increase in Income but at the local level.
Liberal Tammy

Carmel, IN

#5 Jan 14, 2008
Message to politicians. Cut spending NOW, by at least 30%. Eliminate property taxes NOW. No new taxes and cut spending even more over the next year. This can easily be done on the local, state & federal level. Either do our will or be thrown out of office (physically if necessary).
Ron Thomas

Monon, IN

#6 Jan 14, 2008
Liberal Tammy wrote:
Message to politicians. Cut spending NOW, by at least 30%. Eliminate property taxes NOW. No new taxes and cut spending even more over the next year. This can easily be done on the local, state & federal level. Either do our will or be thrown out of office (physically if necessary).
Hey Tammy, didn't you read the above posts or are you just posting this kind of ridiculous rant on every blog? It's not realistic to abolish them in one short year. It's also ignorant to call for it. And your call for cutting spending is great though, if you're not a tad more specific, it may be the welfare check you collect that gets cut.
Markus

Livonia, MI

#7 Jan 14, 2008
If people didn't feel the need to move to the suburbs this wouldn't be much of an issue. Fix the inner cities and people will live there. Biggest argument against living downtown or near it is that the schools are not great. Well duh, they are literally crumbling. Consider a school built in the 60s to a brand new school in the suburbs or even townships.
DRB

Bedford, MA

#8 Jan 14, 2008
Driver 1 wrote:
So Mike, if the State takes school funding from your local property tax and gives it to another County (example Marion----just North of you). It is alright with you that instead of your schools being improved (adding to your homes value), another Counties schools will prosper at your expense as your Homes value goes into a decline. This is what Mitch is proposing.....is that what you really want? Instead of paying for one school system you will be paying for all of the School Corporations statewide. It ain't gonna be cheaper for you.....instead of property tax you will be paying other taxes, Income, Sales, Local, etc:.
A homes assessed value is of no value to someone who does not wish to sell, other than having to pay higher property taxes. No, the problem is property taxes themselves. A homeowner should own their home and not fear the government taking it.

Much of government spending is wasteful and could be cut without hurting those services that actually are for the communities well being. School construction can be controlled by using 4-6 design styles and curtailing Taj Mahal sports complexes.

Taxation is a necessary evil that should be monitored and controlled. It has become too easy for government to increase taxes and we must now find ways to remove that power. Local government and associated agencies (schools, libraries, etc) are the ones that get property tax revenue so they are the ones that must be severely reduced in size and restricted. By cutting the size of government and government spending, we can eliminate property taxes.
Ron Thomas

Monon, IN

#9 Jan 14, 2008
DRB wrote:
<quoted text>
A homes assessed value is of no value to someone who does not wish to sell, other than having to pay higher property taxes. No, the problem is property taxes themselves. A homeowner should own their home and not fear the government taking it.
Much of government spending is wasteful and could be cut without hurting those services that actually are for the communities well being. School construction can be controlled by using 4-6 design styles and curtailing Taj Mahal sports complexes.
Taxation is a necessary evil that should be monitored and controlled. It has become too easy for government to increase taxes and we must now find ways to remove that power. Local government and associated agencies (schools, libraries, etc) are the ones that get property tax revenue so they are the ones that must be severely reduced in size and restricted. By cutting the size of government and government spending, we can eliminate property taxes.
I'm not going to argue your point of cutting. I fully agree that should be one of the first places to look at. So, we agree spending needs to be reined in.
I do want to ask this, if you believe the level of spending cuts are realistic, why not abolish Sales Tax and reduce Property Tax?
Property Tax is a locally control expenditure so you and your neighbors hsould be able to better control it through elections and face to face public meetings.
The Sales on the other hand will be a state level tax which you'll have little controlling. Imagine you and 10 neighbors showing up at the State House complaining about the formulas for distribution. They're going to say, "Well, there's ten of you and a couple million not complaining. We think you're wrong."

Yes you pay taxes. If you don't pay Income what do they do. They take it from any source of revenue they can find for you. They fine you. They can put you in jail. So, yes you can lose your house but not paying other taxes have consequences as well.
And remember, Income is like Sales. The state will control how it's spent, not your local spenders.
Carl Hoffman

AOL

#10 Jan 14, 2008
I have posted this before and since then our banks have barrowed over 45 billion dollars. Your mortage may well be held by someone in China now. We must allow the American Citizen to really own the land. The American Citizen who votes is going to need to really dig in and obtain the real truth of what is taking place in our nation. At the present we have a banking crisis coming our way. Bank of America and several other major banks are in trouble. Credit has collapsed and foreclosures are rising. Credit was extended to many who did not handle it well. The APR was not always the annual percentage rate as many thought. It was the adjusted periodic rate on the card. Now many for whatever reason are seeing their credit cards eat them alive on interest some over loan sharking rates. Who come out ahead in a recession? The banks they regain control of the land and everything of value. Real estate taxes ensure the property will be sold when taxes are not paid. The bank decides who will have the funds to purchase the land at a tax sale. This is one reason the real estate taxes need to be done away with. No one should be paying taxes on a home all their life and then failing once to pay the tax sees it sold the bank will take it if you miss payments. You can as citizens have no control of the money supply only the government and banks do. None of us own our land now so if conditions get to where we cannot afford to purchase gas, pay our bills we are all in danger of seeing our land lost. You can plan all you want to see it does not happen but it can happen to us all. Some get joy seeing some people fail, but when the well goes dry for other citizens it affects us all. We have become a nation of entitlements where our elected feel good by taking money from some to give to others. Once they have done it many feel entitled to have it daily.
We have failed to demand our nations borders be secured. This in turn has allowed many to enter and take work without paying taxes. The illegal immigrants have clogged up our jails and emergency rooms. The problem has been debated but not fixed by anyone. Illegal immigrants cost taxpayers a lot of money that could be used to help real citizens. We have many waiting to enter by legal means. Many major firms hire the illegal ones to cut cost; in effect they have slave labor. Banks like Bank America then give out credit cards to ensure they get the high rates of interest from the slave labors, but no one makes sure they pay taxes. Our founding fathers were freeholders they really owned their land. Not anymore and because we do not the elected rule us by fear. Fail to pay your taxes we will take your land. You can be rich or poor but you do not own your land or business as long as they have levied a tax on it. Your health could fail you and bankrupt tomorrow the home you have lived in for years you might have to sell against your will to someone the bank will loan money to. The elected officials in both parties understand and agree that property taxes are the most stable, the reason being everyone will go without something else to keep their home from going to tax sale or foreclosure. That is not government by representation that is government by fear. When a recession hits like in the 30ís many who feel secure now will understand they should have owned their land. Register and vote and find a candidate who will do away with real estate taxes completely and secure our nations borders. It will and can return us to a sound financial base. We will be seeing America grow again knowing they cannot take our land we can tell them to rule by representation we have no fear of you. If it does not happen we will see our nation fall from leadership in the world and be controlled by greedy banks and government out of control.
Carl Hoffman
Carl Hoffman

AOL

#11 Jan 14, 2008
Ron Thomas is not correct, property taxes are unfair. You never know what they will be and you never are allowed to stop paying them. Sales tax you decide what and when to purchase and look for the best deal when you do. With property taxes you do not have any control period. Sure you can elect local but the fact is you never own your home. When everything falls in like it is starting to look like you have no way to retain your land/home/business. Sale tax means we are all equal in as much all will pay for buying. legal or illegal you pay the sales tax. We remove a layer of government not needed that created the unfairness of property taxes, assessors. If funds are still needed after cuts and spending controls we can allow them to tax property when it is sold and real value known to all involved. Register and vote it will only happen if we the citizens make it happen.
Jim T

Monon, IN

#12 Jan 14, 2008
Carl, why not vote people in that will force us into a cash only economy? No credit at all! You want security and ownership, you'll get it with cash only.

Don't have money to pay for that dress? Go naked!
Don't have money for that house? Go homeless!
Don't have cash to eat? Go hungry!

The Chinese won't own you under these terms, and the APR won't matter even the littlest bit.
WTR

Granger, IN

#13 Jan 14, 2008
Thanks Carl. You said it well.
Chris46227

Indianapolis, IN

#14 Jan 14, 2008
ALSO FEDUP wrote:
I have to disagree that 1% is more than enough. It is far too much. 1% of my assessed value (which I could never, ever sell my home for) is over 20% of my income. I do not live in a fancy house either. It is a 35 yr old, small wood frame house with 1 bath and no basement. No swimming pools, fireplaces, et. Just simple shelter yet over one dollar out of every five I earn goes to paying the tax and trying to keep my home. Since there is no end to raising the assessed value (it need not have any realtionship to reality) there is no end to the % of income that is stolen from us by the tax system. I realize that I can't stay here when I retire in 2 years as I will have even less money and the taxes will continue to go up. If I an lucky I will be able to sell my home for about 75% of the assessed value. I plan to move to a southern state with lower taxes and lower cost of living. I don't want to spend my 'golden years' eating cat food and wondering if I can keep my home for another year. I have some friends and relatives who plan to leave Indiana for the same reasons. We have just been taxed out of our homes.
Unless your home is assessed at 1 million plus, then maybe you should be looking to work someplace other than MacDonalds, or maybe you need to work on your math skills.
test

United States

#15 Jan 14, 2008
If property taxes must exist, they should be based on the purchase price, and never increase until the home changes hands again. The rate should be 1% of less and never increase. That way, you would always know what the tax would be on your property. If you didn't want your taxes to increase, don't move. Using sales data would make assessors obsolete and would truly reflect one's ability to pay.
Colts stadium

Circleville, OH

#16 Jan 14, 2008
Since we're buying the Colts a brand spankin' new stadium maybe Irsay could pay our property taxes for us?
Ron Thomas

Monon, IN

#17 Jan 15, 2008
Carl Hoffman wrote:
Ron Thomas is not correct, property taxes are unfair. You never know what they will be and you never are allowed to stop paying them. Sales tax you decide what and when to purchase and look for the best deal when you do. With property taxes you do not have any control period. Sure you can elect local but the fact is you never own your home. When everything falls in like it is starting to look like you have no way to retain your land/home/business. Sale tax means we are all equal in as much all will pay for buying. legal or illegal you pay the sales tax. We remove a layer of government not needed that created the unfairness of property taxes, assessors. If funds are still needed after cuts and spending controls we can allow them to tax property when it is sold and real value known to all involved. Register and vote it will only happen if we the citizens make it happen.
Carl, let's play question and answer.

Are you the person quoted in the paper the other day? It said your were a Marine and a Police Officer.
If you are this person, Thanks for serving Country and community!

But, for this blog, when you were a Police Officer, what were you seeking as far as your job? Higher pay, better position, more responsibilities?
When you were seeking better pay, did you wonder to yourself if the residents of the community could afford higher salaries for all the force? Did you wonder to yourself, at what time or cost will the community decide you were too expensive?

Understand, I'm not picking on Police or other employees. I'm going to make a point as we go along.
The Rest of the Story

Indianapolis, IN

#18 Jan 15, 2008
I'm not saying that Mr. Venatta doesn't have a valid reason to be outraged at his dramatic increase in property taxes, but either he isn't telling us his whole story, or the Star edited his letter.

Mr. Venatta lives in an area of Johnson County, Clark Township, that used to be primarily agricultural. His house is built on a 10-acre plot. Over the past decade, this land has been reassessed from it's agricultural value to residential. Now the taxes have dramatically increased. This has been caused by several factors including residential housing growth in the past decade, within the Clark-Pleasant School Corporation boundaries, but also within the City of Greenwood's limits or buffer area. The Clark-Pleasant School Corp. has the highest tax rates in Johnson County, plus the population growth requires more and more schools to be built. The City of Greenwood has approved numerous housing subdivisions in this area in the past decade, but it doesn't impact Greenwood Comm. Schools because of the school district boundaries.(I'd caution anyone who's thinking about moving into Greenwood in the Clark-Pleasant district.) It is unfortunate for those already living in the C-P district, especially if you own a sizable plot (10+ acres) of former agricultural land that is now zoned and taxed at the residential rate, and has been reassessed recently.

I doubt that anyone who owns a house in a subdivision had their taxes go up $5000. So, Mr. Venatta, please don't compare your situation with that of most residents of Johnson County.

I do agree, however, that the Indiana General Assembly needs to focus and work very hard to solve this crisis.
H C activist

Monon, IN

#19 Jan 15, 2008
The Rest of the Story wrote:
I'm not saying that Mr. Venatta doesn't have a valid reason to be outraged at his dramatic increase in property taxes, but either he isn't telling us his whole story, or the Star edited his letter.
Mr. Venatta lives in an area of Johnson County, Clark Township, that used to be primarily agricultural. His house is built on a 10-acre plot. Over the past decade, this land has been reassessed from it's agricultural value to residential. Now the taxes have dramatically increased. This has been caused by several factors including residential housing growth in the past decade, within the Clark-Pleasant School Corporation boundaries, but also within the City of Greenwood's limits or buffer area. The Clark-Pleasant School Corp. has the highest tax rates in Johnson County, plus the population growth requires more and more schools to be built. The City of Greenwood has approved numerous housing subdivisions in this area in the past decade, but it doesn't impact Greenwood Comm. Schools because of the school district boundaries.(I'd caution anyone who's thinking about moving into Greenwood in the Clark-Pleasant district.) It is unfortunate for those already living in the C-P district, especially if you own a sizable plot (10+ acres) of former agricultural land that is now zoned and taxed at the residential rate, and has been reassessed recently.
I doubt that anyone who owns a house in a subdivision had their taxes go up $5000. So, Mr. Venatta, please don't compare your situation with that of most residents of Johnson County.
I do agree, however, that the Indiana General Assembly needs to focus and work very hard to solve this crisis.
The amazing thing is, I can show links to properties that are already rezoned to residential but given AG taxing. The Assessor said that the AG designation stays until the property is subdivided.
I can further show links to properties, across the stret from one another and in the same taxing districts, that are up for sale at approximately the same price,$300,000 per acre, and are being assessed at $35,000 per acre max. Again, the Assessor showed where their rules go through a progression of set to arrive at this number.
These are examples of where developers don't get abatements but definitely benefit from special legislation giving them lower tax burdens.
Carl Hoffman

AOL

#20 Jan 15, 2008
My son did or almost they went up 4800 dollars. He is active Military and now will move to Va. Had he been in some states no taxes for active military. So much for supporting our troops. Property taxes are not fair, fail to file for exemption they take money you would not have had to pay but they will not give it back when find out what you failed to do because your in a war.

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