STATEHOUSE - House Democrats ran out on permanent property tax relief today before the GOP Caps Clock did.
Today was the deadline for the third reading of bills in the House. House Democrats voted to adjourn until Monday. Unfortunately, Tax Day came and went without Hoosier taxpayers getting their wish for permanent constitutional property tax protection.
According to a poll taken earlier this month by Public Opinion Strategies, almost three-quarters of Hoosiers support the permanent constitutional property tax caps. Political leanings are irrelevant, the poll showed: 66 percent of Democrats support the caps, 72 percent of independents support them and more than 80 percent of Republicans would like the caps adopted.
"Our job is to represent the people," said Rep. Smith (R-Columbus). "The people have demanded permanent tax relief. We have been prevented from doing our job. The focus of the issue at hand was pushed aside, and party politics were put in front of taxpayer needs, and that's upsetting."
If the House had passed Senate Joint Resolution 1, already passed by a bipartisan majority of the Senate, Hoosier voters would have had the opportunity in 2010 to vote on whether to permanently include the caps in the Indiana Constitution. The property tax caps would limit bills to 1 percent of the property's assessed value for homesteads, 2 percent for residential rental property and farmland and 3 percent for other business property.
The House must complete its work before the April 29 statutory deadline.