Immediate Release: Indiana Already Top in Business, Need to Focus on People

For Immediate Release, February 27, 2014
Contacts: Mark Fairchild, President

Indiana Already Top in Business, Now We Need to Focus on Creating a Strong People Climate: Impact of Proposed Tax Bills

The Indiana General Assembly has been pushing forward with a number of tax proposals that would cut business personal property taxes, provide tax credits for specific industries, cut corporate income tax and provide tax abatements for business property taxes, etc. Once again our elected officials are focusing on decreasing tax revenues from businesses at the expense of funding opportunities that would help advance the State. Indiana is already known as one of the top business climates in the country. At the same time, we continue to lag behind the rest of the country in Pre-K programs, health care outcomes, graduation rates and other marks of a thriving State.

Indiana Coalition for Human Services (ICHS) is concerned about taking action on major tax legislation in a non-budget year that will directly impact the level of tax revenues state and local government will have to fund existing and future obligations.

•Previously enacted tax cuts are still not fully implemented; consequently, their impact will increase over the next biennium.
•Reductions in business personal property taxes and property tax abatements will directly impact the local tax revenues that fund our school systems, fire and police services, township trustee assistance, among other local programs.
•While it has been stated that local governments will have options to replace this tax revenue in other ways, most available options will result in a tax shift to middle and low income families.
•We are also concerned about the possibility of the state government having to find ways to replace this loss in revenue while state departments continue to be operating with a reduction in available money to meet current obligations.

ICHS believes that it is good public policy to review tax structure periodically, including revenues and tax expenditures in the form of deductions and credits. Policymakers should create the right structure for Indiana that continues our healthy business climate while investing in initiatives, such as Pre-K and healthcare coverage expansion. Major tax legislation should be debated in the budget year. Tax reductions should not be made at the expense of creating thriving local communities. We already have a strong business climate in this State, now we need to focus our efforts on creating a strong people climate.

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