Friday, February 12, 2016

People's Forum: Business tax breaks hurt local governments, schools

Posted on Jan. 29, 2014 at 7:36 p.m.

Once again, some Indiana lawmakers want to phase out another tax on business — the business equipment tax. The governor said it would create jobs and make us more competitive with other states. We have all heard that before.

Over the last 10 years the Daniels and Pence administrations have shifted a tax burden balanced between businesses and homeowners to one tilted against wage earners and homeowners. They have cut corporate taxes, cut the inheritance tax, leased the Toll Road for 75 years and forced the state to observe daylight saving time. With their Republican super majority, they forced Indiana to become a right to work state, with Michigan following suit.

They ended the inventory tax in 2008. When this happened, homeowners' property taxes went up some 300 percent. This led to property tax caps. Then there is the never-ending parade of business applying for tax abatements. Much of this has financially devastated local governments, schools, libraries, etc.

It’s time for this to end and it’s time for business to pay its fair share. It's clear that many legislators are not being influenced by their constituencies, but by lobbyists such as the Indiana Chamber of Commerce.

Working-class Hoosiers have had all they can take. This must end.

Timothy Leatherman