After reading Sen. Luke Kenley's comments in Ruthhart's story, I think I know what's going on here. He expressed concern that Gov. Daniels' plan advanced without any changes. "That would be a bad sign. I think it would show some attitude about the bill that may indicate an unwillingness to deal with the issue at this time," Kenley said. "We need for the process to take place in order for it to be fully vetted in all corners of the Statehouse." The Democrats sense the Senate Republicans aren't satisfied with the plan as written so they'll let the Governor fight it out with members of his own party. The Star provides this basic summary of the Daniels plan:
- Cap homeowners' property tax bill at 1 percent of their home's assessed value, beginning in 2009. Would cap rental properties at 2 percent and businesses at 3 percent.Amend those property tax caps into the state constitution.
- Raise the state sales tax from 6 percent to 7 percent, generating nearly $1 billion in 2009.
- Eliminate all township assessors and make county assessors appointed instead of elected.
- Subject all major local construction projects to referendums.
- Limit local spending growth to a county's average personal income growth over six years.
- Shift to the state the remaining 15 percent of school operating costs, K-12 transportation costs and child welfare services.
- In exchange for taking the added school and welfare costs, the state would end about $2 billion in state property tax subsidies to counties.