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Counties brace for big tax losses next year

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Almost all of Indiana’s 92 counties, including Marion and surrounding counties, will see big drops in income tax revenue in 2011 because of the economic downturn.

The State Budget Agency released distribution amounts for local income tax revenue on Friday that show counties collectively will receive almost 16 percent less next year than they did in 2010.

Overall, counties are expected to receive $1.3 billion in income tax revenue in 2011, $255.9 million less than they got this year.

Marion County will collect $250.4 million next year, 16 percent less than it did in 2010. Hamilton County, the second-largest county in central Indiana, will receive $82.3 million, 17 percent less than it did in 2010.

Income tax distributions mostly provide funds for property-tax replacement and relief, the homestead credit and public safety.

Distributions for 2011 are based on income tax returns from 2009, the height of the recession.

David Bottorff, executive director of the Association of Indiana Counties, said he's hopeful economic conditions will improve this year, so income tax distributions will increase in 2012.

“Hopefully, this is the bottom,” he said. “We hope that in [2012] we’ll see slight increases again.”

Among other Indianapolis-area counties, distributions will drop 20 percent for Boone, 13 percent for Shelby, 11 percent for both Johnson and Morgan, 10 percent for Madison, and 8 percent for Hendricks.

Counties in manufacturing-heavy northeast Indiana will see some of the largest drops statewide.

Whitley County, just west of Fort Wayne, is projected to lose nearly $4 million, or 37 percent, of its income tax revenue, The Journal Gazette of Fort Wayne reported, citing data compiled by Allen County Deputy Auditor Tera Klutz.

Neighboring Wells and Kosciusko counties also were forecast to lose more than 25 percent of their income tax revenue, the newspaper reported. Allen County, home to Fort Wayne, and Adams and Huntington counties also were expected to see losses greater than the statewide average of 15.9 percent, it said.

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  • foolish to cancell out your own vote
    You forget that our republic is based upon the local form of govt. IT has become too top heavy. Dont give up on your local twp. they are the only ones who will listen to you. Not for one minute will Lugar take your call but your trustee and the twp board will. so go ahead and foolishly give more power to the state or feds.
  • Get Rid of Townships
    Get rid of township gov. & the big drain on our local $$ available.
  • Brace yourself
    Between this shortfall and the property tax refunds slowly working through the system, it will be an interesting reassessment year in 2012!! This can't be a surprise considering the number of people on unemployment....are they paying their personal taxes?
  • County Tax Loss
    The schools need to cut back on property rehab. I have seen a lot of waste go into school building remodels and new buildings. Letting teachers go is not an option. We must cut the high cost of scholl rehab and stop the architects, construction managers & Program Managers from getting fat off of schools.
  • homestead credit
    This could call for the homestead credit from our property taxes to be done away with, The state government is going to get more from us somehow!
  • So where is the money going to come from
    So if the publics income is down and the public refuses to accept a local adjusted income tax, what services are to be cut? I suspect that the public will use this opportunity to take away their own "local" political structure. What i mean by that is we will force our local politicians to cut our local services, all the while it is the federal government that should be taking the blame. What will happen once we cut the local oppotunities to govern ourselves? Those whom we already do not trust (who do not pay taxes; Daschall, Rengal) will make more and more laws, and unfunded regulations that only control you (the public) more. Remember this when you go to the polls do not fall for the streamlining of your local Government, all that means is volunteering your power to the federal government.

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