Articles

Hamilton County considers tax hike for 911 center


NEW TAX ON THE TABLE FOR RESIDENTS IN HAMILTON COUNTY. OFFICIALS SAY THE MONEY IS NEEDED TO FUND OPERATIONS AT THE 911 CENTER.. AND FREE UP MONEY FOR EACH COMMUNITY IN THE COUNTY. THE PROPOSAL IS AN INCOME TAX OF 1- 10TH OF 1 PERCENT. WISH TV’S DAN KLEIN JOINS US LIVE OUTSIDE 911 DISPATCH WITH A LOOK AT HOW IT WOULD WORK. *DA*) BASICALLY THE IDEA IS TO FIND A NEW WAY TO PAY FOR THE 911 CENTER AND OPERATIONS. INSTEAD OF BILLING EACH COMMUNITY GOVERNMENT.. WHETHER CARMEL OR FISHERS PAYING THEIR SHARE.. IT WOULD BE PAID FOR BY INDIVIDUAL RESIDENTS THROUGH AN INCOME TAX. THE MATH IS PRETTY EASY — IF YOU MAKE 100 THOUSAND DOLLARS.. YOU WOULD HAVE TO PAY 100 BUCKS A YEAR.. A LITTLE LESS THAN 10 BUCKS PER MONTH. THE OTHER PART OF THE EQUATION.. IT WOULD BRING MILLIONS MORE THAN THE CURRENT SYSTEM. *DAN KLEIN, REPORTIN*) NAT: BUTTON, WHAT’S YOUR EMERGENCY EVERY DAY.. EVERY NIGHT.. DISPATCHERS ANSWER THE CALL.. ABOUT 500 THOUSAND A YEAR IN HAMILTON COUNTY. CURRENT BUDGET.. 11.4 MILLION DOLLARS HERE.. STILL NOT ENOUGH. “NO, NO.” CALL VOLUME IS GOING UP. SO ARE COSTS — ENOUGH THAT CITIES AND TOWNSHIPS SAY THEY CAN’T AFFORD IT. THAT’S WHY A LOCAL INCOME TAX OR LIT IS ON THE TABLE. 15.4 MILLION THROUGH PAYCHECKS ELIMINATING THE NEED TO BILL CITIES AND TOWNSHIPS. JEFF SCHEMMER/ HAMILTON COUNTY EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF COMMUNICATIONS “WE’VE DETERMINED IT’S THE FAIREST MEANS TO DISTRIBUTE THE COSTS TO EVERYBODY IN THE COUNTY AND FUND THE CENTER.” 1/10 OF ONE PERCENT IS THE SMALLEST ALLOWED BY STATE LAW. PERHAPS THE MOST CONTROVERSIAL PART — IT WOULD CREATE AN EXTRA 7 MILLION DOLLARS OF REVENUE ANNUALLY TO 911. JEFF SCHEMMER SAYS.. 911 WOULD TAKE ON ADDITIONAL EXPENSES LIKE IMMEDIATELY STARTING TO PAY FOR POLICE AND FIREFIGHTER RADIOS AROUND THE COUNTY.. FREEING UP ADDITIONAL REVENUE FOR COMMUNITIES.. “IT DOES ADD UP QUICK.” AS WELL AS ALLOWING THE COUNTY TO BUILD A NEW 911 CENTER WITHIN THE NEXT 5 YEARS. HE KNOWS THE WORDS “NEW TAX” CAN BE DIRTY WORDS.. “PEOPLE ARE GOING TO LOOK AT IT THAT WAY, BUT THIS IS A TAX YOU’RE GOING TO SEE EXACTLY WHAT IT’S GOING TO.” BUT BELIEVES THIS IS THE BEST WAY TO MOVE FORWARD WITH AN EYE TO THE FUTURE SO SOMEONE IS ALWAYS READY TO ANSWER THE CALL. “THINGS ARE GOING TO GROW. THE GOAL IS TO PROVIDE THE CITIZENS OF HAMILTON COUNTY THE ABSOLUTE BEST IN PUBLIC SAFETY RESPONSE.” *MIK*) FOR THIS IDEA TO PASS.. CITY OR COUNTY COUNCILS REPRESENTING AT LEAST 50 PERCENT OF RESIDENTS HAVE TO PASS IT. ARCADIA HAS ALREADY DONE SO. WESTFIELD IS EXPECTED TO DISCUSS THE IDEA AT ITS MEETING ON MONDAY. CARMEL AND FISHERS BOTH HAVE CITY COUNCIL MEETINGS SET FOR MONDAY SEPTEMBER 16TH. THE VOTES HAVE TO HAPPEN BEFORE THE END OF THE MONTH — AND IF PASSED WOULD GO INTO EFFECT JANUARY

Tagged , , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *