Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Local News

February 17, 2013

Public eye - Sunday, Feb. 17, 2013

Not this year

Proposed legislation that would lower the personal property tax depreciation floor from 30 to 20 percent and a second bill to eliminate the tax will not be considered by the Indiana General Assembly this year.

Sen. Jim Buck, R-Kokomo, authored the legislation to lower the depreciation floor, stating at the Third House Session in January that it was filed only to start the discussion on eliminating personal property taxes in Indiana.

Kokomo and Howard County officials expressed opposition to the legislation with city officials estimating it would result in a $13.5 million shift from industry onto other property taxpayers. At the January meeting, Lawrence McCormack, city attorney, said the proposal could double property taxes for homeowners.

Buck said there are a lot of Indiana counties that are not dependent on personal property taxes. He said Illinois and Ohio have already eliminated personal property taxes.

Needing funds

The group opposed to the planned Prairie Breeze Wind Farm in northwestern Tipton County is preparing to make a presentation at the Board of Zoning Appeals hearing in an attempt to stop the development.

Tipton County Citizen’s for Responsible Development have hired a Fort Wayne attorney to represent them and are seeking experts in the area of property values and health to counter claims made by developer juwi Wind.

Last week the group met in Sharpsville and organizers told those in attendance they needed $25,000 to pay the attorney and experts. Thus far the group has raised about 50 percent of that total and need another $10,000 to $15,000.

Opponents of the wind farm were encouraged to wear white shirts to the BZA hearing on Feb. 25 starting at 5:30 p.m. in the auditorium of the Tipton High School.

How about a tax break?

If the farmers in Tipton County’s Prairie and Liberty townships weren’t standing to profit enough by leasing land to the Prairie Breeze project, the project would also lower their property taxes, according to a consultant’s study released by the county Wednesday.

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