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Bill to make IEDC more transparent moves to full senate

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The Indiana Senate Tax and Fiscal Policy Committee unanimously passed legislation Tuesday meant to makes the state’s job-creation efforts more transparent to the general public.

Senate Bill 162, which now moves to the full Senate for consideration, would increase the amount of information made public when the Indiana Economic Development Corp. gives tax breaks and other incentives to companies to move to or expand in Indiana.

“It’s the public’s right to know how their tax dollars are being spent,” said Sen. Mike Delph, R-Carmel.

Under current law, the IEDC and the businesses that receive incentives are not required to release the records pertaining to the number of jobs created or the money handed out.

The incentives are not paid out until actual jobs are created, according to Eric Doden, the IEDC's new CEO.

The bill would require both the agency and the firms to present annual job creation and financial investment information to the public.

Delph said the committee needs to answer one key question: “When a company seeks a public tax break and, in return, tells the state they plan to invest a certain amount of dollars, or create a certain number of jobs, should they be held accountable by routine disclosure of their progress to that which they promised the state?”

But Sen. Gregory Taylor, D-Indianapolis, questioned whether the added transparency would help or hurt the IEDC’s quest to recruit new businesses. Taylor pointed out that a private company’s financial information often falls under the category of trade secrets in the state’s Open Records law for a reason. He said opening this information to the public, including competing businesses and states, could be detrimental to the IEDC’s goals.

Delph responded by saying that Illinois has some of the strongest transparency laws in the country and has still attracted more new facilities and expansions in the last three years than Indiana.

He said the goal is to tie tax dollars and job commitments to what they — the businesses — promised to do in advance.

Doden said the IEDC favors transparency and accountability but doesn’t want to do anything that puts at risk his organization’s ability to bring jobs to Indiana. He does, however, support the bill.

Indiana spends about $142 per capita on corporate subsidies, according to a recent New York Times study, but that's far less than many other states.
 

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  1. If what you stated is true, then this article is entirely inaccurate. "State sells bonds" is same as "State borrows money". Supposedly the company will "pay for them". But since we are paying the company, we are still paying for this road with borrowed money, even though the state has $2 billion in the bank.

  2. Andrew hit the nail on the head. AMTRAK provides terrible service and that is why the state has found a contractor to improve the service. More trips, on-time performance, better times, cleanliness and adequate or better restrooms. WI-FI and food service will also be provided. Transit from outlying areas will also be provided. I wouldn't take it the way it is but with the above services and marketing of the service,ridership will improve and more folks will explore Indy and may even want to move here.

  3. They could take the property using eminent domain and save money by not paying the church or building a soccer field and a new driveway. Ctrwd has monthly meetings open to all customers of the district. The meetings are listed and if the customers really cared that much they would show. Ctrwd works hard in every way they can to make sure the customer is put first. Overflows damage the surrounding environment and cost a lot of money every year. There have been many upgrades done through the years to help not send flow to Carmel. Even with the upgrades ctrwd cannot always keep up. I understand how a storage tank could be an eye sore, but has anyone thought to look at other lift stations or storage tanks. Most lift stations are right in the middle of neighborhoods. Some close to schools and soccer fields, and some right in back yards, or at least next to a back yard. We all have to work together to come up with a proper solution. The proposed solution by ctrwd is the best one offered so far.

  4. Fox has comments from several people that seem to have some inside information. I would refer to their website. Changed my whole opionion of this story.

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