GOVERNMENT: Property tax relief is here in Lake County

The Times Board of Economists - Michael Griffin, Town of Highland clerk/treasurer
2014-05-04T00:00:00Z 2014-05-04T07:52:07Z GOVERNMENT: Property tax relief is here in Lake CountyBy Keith Benman keith.benman@nwi.com, (219) 933-3326 nwitimes.com

Lake County taxpayers are now experiencing the gain that helps make up for the pain caused by county's recently instituted income tax.

Tax statements now going out in the mail detail just how much property tax relief each taxpayer is getting from the new income tax, with $97 million in proceeds being used to cut property tax bills, according to Michael Griffin, Town of Highland clerk/treasurer.

Individuals' overall property tax bills will come down by amounts varying by community. Previous estimates showed that in Crown Point the overall cut would be about 16.5 percent and in Merrillville about 16.3 percent.

But Lake County's method for implementing the tax cut is also aiding municipalities, because it is ameliorating the effect of property tax caps, which have left many cash-strapped when it comes to providing services, Griffin said.

"That means it can be put toward all the good things government should be doing," Griffin said.

Another $24.3 million in income tax proceeds are being devoted to local law enforcement. And a similar amount is being made available for local economic development.

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