Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Opinion

February 12, 2014

Feb. 12, 2014: Letters to the editor

Pence isn’t listening to what’s being said

We elect our government leaders to lead us in the common good of our communities. Sometimes these leaders have to make unpopular choices and we accept that, having trusted in them with the confidence they would do their best for us. But on the other hand, if everybody tells you you’re sick, you better go lay down.

Mike Pence, the former conservative radio show host and current governor of this great Hoosier Heartland, jumped at the chance to make Indiana communities more efficient by reducing funding for public schools, law enforcement and libraries, just to name a few amenities. The aforesaid communities are naturally outraged.

Last week a coalition of bipartisan mayors drove to Indianapolis through the snow from the far reaches of the great Hoosier Heartland to stage an intervention in the governor’s office. Their goal was to wave off this ridiculous, chief executive inspired abolishment of the business personal property tax. While lawmakers ignore business leaders and educational institutions from around the state and grapple with the problem of defining marriage on a stone in front of the capital, they are actually giving consideration to the governor’s idea. A plan that will cost local governments $1 billion.

While Kokomo and Howard County churned out balance sheets in the black this year, many Hoosier communities are drowning in red ink. Locally, Taylor Schools’ new superintendent is faced with making drastic funding cuts and the Peru Schools already have eliminated bus service for many of their students. Reportedly independent reports say elimination of the business personal property tax will close library facilities, eliminate public transportation systems, create substantial manpower shortages in police departments and take school buses off the streets. The 2008 property tax caps, the reportedly independent reports say, already have cut Indiana communities to the bone.

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