Thursday, October 30, 2014


Mayor “Dick” Moore (Photo Supplied) (PHOTO SUPPLIED)
Elkhart City Council faces several votes on resolutions
Posted on Feb. 2, 2014 at 3:43 p.m.

ELKHART − The city council will have a handful of resolutions to consider on Monday night, Feb. 3, but not before electing new officers.

A deadlocked vote of 4-4 in mid-January pushed back the annual decision on the make-up of council leadership to Monday’s meeting.

If all nine council members attend Monday's meeting, a series of votes could come within the first few minutes of the meeting.

Among the resolutions put before the council is one that would oppose the elimination of the business personal property tax, which was proposed by Gov. Mike Pence and is now being considered by the Indiana General Assembly.

Moore is also rallying support for state approval of a bill that would allow for a new option to the county’s local option income tax.

According to Moore, Goshen City Council, the Goshen Chamber of Commerce and Goshen’s school district have all voiced support for both resolutions and that he’d like to see Elkhart’s city council, chamber and school district do the same.

If approved, Elkhart would be the latest in a list of communities formally opposing the tax cut because of its anticipated impact on local taxing units.

Moore said in a letter to council members last week that the city has endured an $11 million reduction in property tax revenues in recent years and the potential anticipated loss from the business personal property tax elimination − if approved − would push that total to $16 million.

Moore echoed the slogan, “Erase only if you replace.”

“No one is saying do not eliminate the personal business property tax, but do not make the same mistake you did with the inventory tax elimination and end up putting the load back on the people,” Moore wrote.

Moore also wants the council to pass a resolution supporting approval of a new option for the local option income tax. The tax would be adjusted annually to help replace revenue that local taxing units have lost as a result of property tax caps.

“This new option can provide needed replacement revenue at a lower percentage local option income tax,” Moore wrote to council members.

The legislation was introduced by local state Rep. Tim Wesco.

The council also needs to take action on two ordinances that will help carry out the city’s 2014 spending plans. One would adopt a schedule of salaries and other compensation for police officers. The other is an appropriation of $175,566 to cover the cost of three SoMa position at the Lerner Theatre.

The council members have already indicated a plan to send the SoMa funding request to a committee once a council president is chosen.