Monday, September 08, 2008

Township Assessors Must Go

Attention elsewhere has allowed little attention to be paid to the unfinished task of government consolidation. Marion County voters will be able to take an important step in that direction by voting in favor of a referendum on this November's ballot to eliminate township assessors in Marion County. Marion County Assessor Greg Bowes pens a column in today's Star reminding us of the disastrous work most of the township assessors performed in Marion County during last year's reassessments. Bowes writes:

On the Nov. 4 ballot is a public question we must all consider seriously. It will read: "Should the assessing duties of the elected township assessor in the township be transferred to the county assessor?" If taxpayers want their assessments done correctly and on time, they should vote "yes."

Center Township offers the best reason for getting rid of this office. The corrupt Center Township Democratic organization put a janitorial supervisor for IPS schools in the position of township assessor so it was no surprise he didn't have a clue how to do the job. Getting rid of township assessors is an important first step in eliminating these cesspools of political corruption and cronyism masquerading as legitimate agencies of government.

12 comments:

HOOSIERS FOR FAIR TAX said...

Gary...let's take that a step further and get rid of ALL the assessors and property tax.

The system is broken.

Our constitution requires property tax to be fair and uniform.

There is no way to fix the property tax system and obey the constitution and keep it fair.

spooknp said...

There is no way to fix the property tax system and obey the constitution and keep it fair.

Actually, there is a way to make it fair. Base the tax on the amount of sq. footage and acreage of the property.

roger61611 said...

Hmmm...wonder if this will get through.

First, there's nothing intrinsically wrong with township assessors, we've had them for over 100 years. The problem has been that they are not doing their job...it's a corruption problem, not a structural problem.

Second, to spooknp, you have to be kidding. A 1500 sq ft home in Lockerbie Square would assess the same as a 1500 sq ft home on Hovey Street, though it costs 20 times as much.

artfuggins said...

spooknp.....that wouldn't fair either....square footage on North Meridian or in Hamilton County would be worth lots more than some same size property in one of the very impoverished rural counties of Indiana. To tell the truth, I dont know what would be the fairest but what we have now is not fair.

Indy4U2C said...

Can you take the corrupt Township Trustees, like "Corrupt Carl" with the assessors?

Shofar said...

Let's not only get rid of the assessors, but also the rest of the township offices. Start with, especially in Marion County, the township schools.

Now, before I get pilloried by the masses, hear me out.

Eliminate the township school, and go to a consolidated school system. Currently there are nine (9) districts in Marion County, each with their own administrative costs, staff, etc. By bringing it down to one administrative unit, and giving a consolidated school system the buying power it would engender, the long term cost savings could be dramatic.

Secondly, the tax base that would pay for schools would be spread out over the entire county, and would therefore (in theory) eliminate the current disparity between the township schools and IPS. One of the complaints I hear often is that IPS, which is primarily Center Township, does not have the tax base to support the improvements IPS needs. By sharing the tax burden across the entire county, IPS would, again in theory, be able to afford needed improvements.

In sum, this would eliminate redundancy in administration, increase purchasing power of the district, and spread the fiscal liabilities across a wider population. The theoretical goal being that educational opportunity and achievement would be realized, and we, as a society and community, would reap the harvest of a better educated and productive citizenry.

Then again, IPS, being IPS, might just make the entire school system in Indianapolis fail worse than it currently is.

Mike Kole said...

Here's a fair system: One taxpayer, one bill.

It's so fair, it will never see the light of day. People love to yell about 'social justice' and 'economic justice' all while being the antithesis of the very thing.

artfuggins said...

Shofar, that was in the original Unigov bill but had to be removed because the township schools did not want "those" minority children sitting in the same classes as their children. Unigov should have consolidated everything from schools to police departments to fire departments and eliminated cities inside cities who vote for two mayors.

guy77money said...

Time for the assessors to be sent to pasture along with the constables. There are enough sheriff's around to do their work.

varangianguard said...

No matter what spooknp thinks, it is so subjective that a "fair" assessment for all seems like a pipedream.

But, it could be much fairer, and it could be more objective.

Unfortunately, as long as politicians are in charge, that liklihood is slim.

IPS is only as good as the parents make it. Some schools are pretty good, but many more aren't.

It is a societal problem when parents don't believe that schooling will do anything to improve the lot of their children. Find a way to remedy that, and you'd be toasted from Maine to Alaska.

7th CD guy said...

OMG, Wilson actually has a point!
that was in the original Unigov bill but had to be removed because the township schools did not want "those" minority children sitting in the same classes as their children. Unigov should have consolidated everything from schools to police departments to fire departments and eliminated cities inside cities who vote for two mayors.

12:08 AM EST



AI, can you get rid of that stupid word verification. Some of us have a hard time seeing the skewed letters!

artfuggins said...

7th CD guy...I realize that it was a back handed compliment but thanks anyway. My father always said tht a broken clock was accurate twice a day so I guess you can have some hope for me. I have a suggestion. Let's eliminate Greg Bowes as County Assessor as he obviously does not understand what is happening and his office is proceeding at a snail's pace. They still have not opened the mail containing appeals that were mailed in early July. This is mid September.