The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Local Politics

February 10, 2014

Pendleton approves resolution against cuts

PENDLETON -- Pendleton Town Council President Robert Jones said he understands why Gov. Mike Pence is pushing for an elimination of the business personal property tax. An elimination of the tax would be another positive check mark for businesses looking to locate in Indiana.

But Jones thinks eliminating the tax, which local units of government like Pendleton rely on, could have unintended consequences. He said so during the town’s monthly council meeting, when the council approved a resolution spelling out its position on the tax elimination.

Since the resolution passed, it will now be sent to Pence’s office and Pendleton’s local legislators.

The business property tax charges a tax on any sort of equipment a business purchases. Across the state, the tax generates about $1 billion which is doled out to local governments, schools, libraries and other entities like fire departments.

Pence wants the tax eliminated so more businesses would be encouraged to come to Indiana.

Jones said he is worried a decrease in funds might have an opposite effect. With a decrease in revenue, cities and schools would have to cut back on things like parks or public safety. Those are some of the things businesses look at when deciding what city to come to. Having a down-sized police force or parks in disrepair could make a company take its business elsewhere Jones said.

“Employers are attracted to certain communities,” Jones said. “And that in part is based off of amenities such as parks, public safety and other things. Pendleton is a desirable place to live and we’d like to keep it that way.”

There is fear if the tax is done away with, quality of life could suffer in Pendleton. Jones said the town is looking at a 10 percent cut in property tax revenue if the governor’s plan is put into action.

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