"The Official Portrait of Miss InDiana"

"The Official Portrait of Miss InDiana"
aka "Miss Victory"

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Lake Sylvan Tea Party Earns Ft. Wayne's Journal Gazette Headline

Property tax foes set ‘tea party'
By Angela Mapes
Frustrated LaGrange and Noble county residents hope to brew a tempest when they dip a giant tea bag into Sylvan Lake on Sunday.

A group calling itself Hoosiers for Fair Taxation is inviting local residents to bring their property tax bills to be placed in a “tea bag” and dunked in the lake. The group had a similar rally last month in Indianapolis.

Hoosiers for Fair Taxation advocates abolishing property tax in Indiana, a news release from the organization said.

Nick Heffner, an engineer from Rome City who is helping organize the protest, said his property tax bill went up about $2,400. He’s never protested anything before but feels drawn to this cause, he said.“We just decided we’d make a little noise about it,” he said.
Assessed values in Noble County increased12 percent this year on average, county officials have said.

Heffner said he and his co-organizers have written to their state representatives and senators, as well as contacted local government officials.

What they’ve found is that local officials blame state ones, and vice versa, he said.
According to Heffner, the group’s informal comparison of homes on Sylvan Lake and nearby Lake Wawasee found huge disparities in property taxes on similar properties.

Even given the differences in location, “there shouldn’t be that big a disparity,” he said.
Sunday’s protest will take place rain or shine, Heffner said. Anyone interested is invited to meet at 2:30 p.m. at the Sylvan Lake public access site on Indiana 9 by boat or car.
For more information, visit http://www.hoosiersforfairtaxation.com/.

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