I'm not really sure who this applies to more, the Indiana General Assembly, or the voters who keep electing the same two parties over and over again. The Republicans and the Democrats have shown that they cannot be trusted to enact policy that provides meaningful property tax relief. It does not matter one bit which party is in control, it almost always devolves into petty partisan bickering while the Indiana taxpayer gets left holding the bag.
The worst part of this present scenario is that the lawsuit that triggered our current problems was filed in 1993. The court opinions that imposed upon us a "fair market value" system occurred over the time span of 1996-1998. Our legislature has had over 10 years to ensure that a system was in place that would provide for a truly "Uniform & Equal" system of assessment and taxation.
In 2007 the citizens of this state took to the streets to demand true property tax reform, and barring that, repeal. Our governmental units took notice. Those who continued to pretend that the sky was not falling saw their political careers left in a shambles, whether they had the power to affect property tax reform or not. Then came the May 2008 primaries, which conveniently occurred prior to the mailing of the RECONCILIATION BILLS, and the voters, dazzled by the media attention of a suddenly meaningful Presidential primary, forgot the lessons of last summer. In fact many believed that the "tax reform" package passed by the General Assembly this spring and touted as the best they could do, was the real tax relief we needed. Regardless of cause we saw no change in the school boards that account for over 50% of our property tax burden. The same big spenders or the chosen replacements for the big spenders were carried to victory by those who think the school house is the major factor in our children's education. Incumbent legislators survived every primary challenger.
We are headed down a path to nowhere.
This week the reconciliation bills are being mailed, and much the dismay of many, there is little change for the better. Many homeowners have seen major increases over last summer's bill. Once again we will see Hoosier taxpayers marching in the streets.
'Cause the summer's here and the time is right for fighting in the street, boy.
The Rolling Stones, "Street Fighting Man"
The 2008 election year is supposed to be all about change, but as long as the two parties that now control our government are continually reelected, there can be no change.