Thursday, August 28, 2014

Indy Democrats Want to Raise Income Taxes While Republicans Want to Raise Income and Property Taxes

The headline outlines the dilemma faced by fiscal conservatives.  The Indianapolis Star reports:
The Public Safety and Criminal Justice Committee voted 6-4 to send the plan to the full council for a vote. If approved, it would raise $29 million a year for police by increasing the local police income taxes about $64 a year for a resident earning $42,000 annually.
The 6-4 vote was along party lines with the GOP in the minority.  Amazingly Republicans Councilors such as Ben Hunter and Aaron Freeman didn't vote against the proposal because of the income tax increase, but rather because they also wanted to raise residents' property tax too.  Yes, Indianapolis Republicans (with the exception of Councilor Christine Scales) are upset with Democrats because they do not support increasing taxes even more.

As proposed, I don't believe there is any restrictions on the revenue with public safety, that the money would be required to be used to hire more police officers as opposed to, say, paying the new revenue to the proposed new Justice Center, the cost of which has already skyrocketed to over $600 million?    After all, the last increase in the local income tax in 2007, the majority of which was supposed to be used to hire more police officers, resulted in fewer officers being hired?   Why should we believe it would be different this time?

I would be remiss if I didn't comment on the Star's writer assertion that the proposed tax hike is "a slight income tax hike."  That word "slight" seems like an editorial insertion instead of what a journalist, trained in presenting a story in an unbiased fashion, would write.   In fact, it is an increase of more than 9% (1.62% to 1.77%)  in the local option income tax and, if viewed more narrowly, a 43% increase (.35% to .50%) in the public safety portion of that tax.  The tax increase is hardly a "slight" one.


Jon said...

Indianapolis residents are very familiar with "slight tax hikes", e.g. the 1% increase in sales tax hikes to fund the Dome. You know the tax that would go away once the Dome was paid off. Same rhetoric was used to push the sales tax increase, it's only pennies.

This is more of the same old bait and switch, we need money for public safety (Peterson's 65% increase in local income taxes). Did it go to public safety, nope.

Pete Boggs said...

It's more a dilemma for an unwitting & imperiled establishment; whose survival ironically depends on the very Tea Party base it has disowned.

The Tea Party has simply noticed, there's no articulate difference, between the short change establishment & leftist vampires. The "advance" of statism is reliant on fraud.

One way or the other, for the establishment, it's over. Their fall from Enthusiasm Gap, is a long one that's difficult to survive...

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