Indiana lawmakers broke from tradition Tuesday when they met for the traditionally ceremonial “Organization Day” in Indianapolis. Pressed by concerns over hikes in property taxes, members of both the House and Senate agreed to suspend the rules and pass legislation they say will provide some temporary help for homeowners while the legislature tries to find a more permanent solution. State Representative Peggy Welch says the bill passed yesterday will accomplish several short-term but important goals.
Welch says some lawmakers voted against the measure, in part because it allows property tax rebates to be issued even if there are delinquent taxes on the property in question. She says that part of the bill came in response to concerns from local governments that it would take too long to determine which properties were in arrears, and to then fix the problem. She says that wouldn’t be fair because it would delay getting tax rebates to homeowners who had fulfilled their tax obligations. Welch says other legislators voted against the measure simply because they didn’t approve of suspending the usual parliamentary rules. She says she expects the governor to sign the measure in the near future.