The Duneland School Board unanimously passed a resolution against Governor
Mike Pence’s proposal to eliminate business personal property taxes in
Duneland Schools Superintendent David Pruis presented the resolution to the
Pruis said that according to the Porter County Auditor’s Certificate of Net
Assessed Valuations for 2013 pay 2014, Duneland Schools would see a loss of
$599.2 million from its total net assessed valuation of roughly $2.4
billion, or 25.1 percent.
The resolution said a study by the Legislative Services Agency estimated
$963 million in business personal property taxes were paid out in 2012
statewide and approximately $510 million in revenue would be lost for local
units of government if the tax were eliminated.
The study estimated that an additional $453 million would be paid by Hoosier
property owners through increased taxes.
Pruis did not say how much the impact on Duneland taxpayers would be, but
said that tax bills would shift upward.
“If you take away 25.1 percent, tax rates will rise,” said Pruis.
The measure will push taxes higher than what the tax caps will allow,
leaving a permanent revenue loss for local units of government, the
Pruis said the tax elimination will result in an annual loss of over $1.4
million to the school corporation’s referendum fund. The fund this year
generated over $5 million.
The resolution called Pence’s plan “unsound public policy” because it would
cut revenue that county governments, townships, public schools, fire
departments, airports and libraries need to provide services.
All five board members agreed to resolution and will urge state officials
Reps. Charles Moseley, D-Portage, Scott Pelath, D-Michigan City, Ed Soliday,
R-Valparaiso, and Sen. Karen Tallian, D-Ogden Dunes, to vote against any
proposal that would eliminate the business personal property tax without
“complete replacement revenue to all units of local government.”