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[R15] Town of Griffith one step closer to joining a new township
Start Date: 4/18/2013Start Time: 12:00 PM
End Date: 4/18/2013End Time: 12:00 PM
Entry Description

Town of Griffith one step closer to joining a new township

STATEHOUSE - State Rep. Hal Slager (R-Schererville) is pleased that House Bill 1585 will be sent to Gov. Pence’s desk to be signed.  HB 1585 will allow the town of Griffith to vote by referendum to opt out of Calumet Township in Lake County. 

“This legislation will give Griffith the ability to have more control over their tax rate, giving our community more resources to grow. I will continue to fight for legislation that benefits our economic growth,” said Rep. Slager.  

Current law prohibits a town or city to remove itself from a township or apply to join a new township by referendum.  The town of Griffith in Lake County is partially included in Calumet Township. Calumet Township’s assistance tax rate is 22 times higher than the state average township assistance tax rate. HB1585 will result in lower bills for Griffith property owners and increased revenue for other government units. According to the fiscal analysis Griffith would gain $310,000 to their general fund and Griffith Public Schools Corporation $134,000.

Without this legislation, Griffith’s township taxes will continue to go to other areas in Calumet Township outside the town limits. HB1585 would allow the town of Griffith to join a different township with a lower tax rate and one that would return more funds to the town of Griffith. Calumet Township will have a year to lower their property tax to 12 times the statewide average; if they are unable the Department of Local Government will classify the township as a Distressed Political Subdivision. By 2015, if the tax rate is not at a minimum of 12 times the statewide average then the referendum process will begin.

 “This bill creates the opportunity – with the necessary provisions and safeguards in place – for a municipality to relocate to another township,” said Rep. Slager. I have been listening to the struggles of our community for years. As a former town council member, I know the difference HB 1585 will create in providing Griffith with the tools to continue to create a prosperous and thriving community.”

In order for Griffith to remove itself from Calumet Township and apply to join a new township, residents must petition for a referendum, and the referendum must pass by a two-thirds margin. If the referendum passes, the town will apply to join an adjacent township.

HB1585 is coauthored by Rep. Jerry Torr (R-Carmel) and Rep. Mara Candelaria Reardon (D-Hammond).

Contact Information:
Name: Michael Niland
Phone: 317-232-9805
Email: mniland@iga.in.gov
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