Lake council can't support RBA bailout

2012-06-12T18:15:00Z 2012-06-13T10:13:07Z Lake council can't support RBA bailoutBy Bill Dolan bill.dolan@nwi.com, (219) 662-5328 nwitimes.com

CROWN POINT | Lake County Council members declined to support an effort Tuesday to lobby the Indiana General Assembly for more financial support for the Regional Bus Authority.

RBA officials have told employees June 30 will be the agency's last day if its pleas for a financial bailout go unheeded.

Some council members proposed a resolution that would put Lake County on record as supporting a change in the state law governing state income taxes paid by county residents.

Currently, an individual receives a tax break if his or her earned income from salaries is less than $18,600. Officials said the break was intended to help low-income families, but wealthier people living on investment and pension income, which isn't counted under the "earned income" definition, also are taking advantage of it.

Some officials want to close that loophole and use the additional tax revenue to help the RBA.

However, a majority of council members declined to vote for the resolution. Councilman Rick Niemeyer, R-Lowell, said he couldn't support it until he finds out how the RBA would use the money.

Other council members have said they first want to see the county's overlapping bus services consolidate to cut costs.

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