A hundred protesters braved the cold and windy weather at the Lake County Government Center on Saturday to hold a tea party tax revolt against escalating property taxes.
The protesters came from Lake County, Porter County, Indianapolis, and Freedom, Indiana. Their message was clear--cut wasteful spending in government and repeal property taxes.
County Commissioners Fran DuPey and Gerry Scheub were the only local elected officials to come out in support of the tea party tax protest.
Patriot Paul (Paul Wheeler) came dressed in Revolutionary War costume and began the tea party by reading the Declaration of Independence, which states that when government ceases to do what the citizens want, the citizens have the right to abolish that government and establish a new one. Patriot Paul also dunked the ceremonial tea bag containing tax assessments and bills into the pond as a sign of protest.
Tax activists spoke about how our elected officials ignore the Indiana Constitution and enact laws and taxes that are contrary to the foundation of Indiana government. The Indiana Constitution specifically states that taxes on corporations are to be used for the common school fund, not property taxes. It also states that a person's home cannot be sold for nonpayment of taxes.
Citizens also spoke out against the county option income tax and why replacing a tax with a tax is not relief for taxpayers. The only real relief will come from spending reductions, which our elected officials have refused to do, and a total elimination of property taxes altogether. People are continuing to suffer and lose their homes as was evidenced by Lake County foreclosure figures.
The governor's property tax reform plan was also mentioned. House Bill 1001 has seen many changes to it in both the house and senate. It seems the lobbyists and special interest groups have gone to great lengths to water down any effective reform. What the governor originally proposed may not be what the taxpayers end up with, and there is already talk of lawsuits against the 1, 2 3 tax cap plan. The General Assembly convenes on March 14. Pressure needs to be put on our state legislators to quit catering to lobbyists and special interest groups and give the taxpayers what they deserve. A permanent solution to the property tax crisis. Property tax repeal.
Elections for state representatives are also this year. If our state legislators continue to do nothing except put bandaids on the property tax crisis, there will be alot of new faces in the State House come next January.