ATTORNEYS FOR PETITIONERS:         ATTORNEYS FOR RESPONDENTS:
PETER L. BENJAMIN                 JEFFREY A. MODISETT
Merrillville, Indiana                    Attorney General of Indiana                             Indianapolis, Indiana
GERALD M. BISHOP              
GRECO PERA & BISHOP                 ANGELA L. MANSFIELD
Merrillville, Indiana                     Deputy Attorney General
                            Indianapolis, Indiana

JOHN S. DULL                     BETH H. HENKEL
Merrillville, IN                     Deputy Attorney General
                            Indianapolis, Indiana
_____________________________________________________________________

IN THE
INDIANA TAX COURT
_____________________________________________________________________
TROY MONTGOMERY, LAKE COUNTY                                      ) 
et al.,See footnote 
               1
                                                                                           )
                                                                       )
             Petitioners,                                              )          
                                                                       )
v.                                                                     ) Cause No. 45T10-9807-TA-00084
                                                                       )
STATE BOARD OF TAX COMMISSIONERS,                                      )
INDIANA FAMILY & SOCIAL SERVICES                                   ) 
ADMINISTRATION, CONNIE NASS,                                           )    
Auditor, STATE OF INDIANA,                                             )
TIM BERRY,See footnote 2 Treasurer,                 )         
STATE OF INDIANA, and             )
STATE OF INDIANA,                )
                    )
            Respondents. )

_____________________________________________________________________

ORDER ON MOTION FOR INTERPLEADER AND MOTION FOR INJUNCTIVE RELIEF
_____________________________________________________________________

June 30, 1999

NOT FOR PUBLICATION


FISHER, J.
    This case involves a challenge to the constitutionality of the Health Care for the Indigent (HCI) property tax levy. The petitioners contend that the HCI property tax levy falls disproportionately on Lake County property owners and consequently violates article I, section 23 and article X, section 1 of the Indiana Constitution and the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.
PROCEDURAL HISTORY
    On July 20, 1998, the Lake County Council, Lake County, and the Lake County Board of Commissioners, as well as various members of the Lake County Council filed this original tax appeal on behalf of themselves and all taxpayers residing in Lake County.See footnote 3 On August 28, these petitioners amended their appeal petition and filed a petition to enjoin the collection of the HCI property tax. On October 9, 1998, the respondents filed a motion to dismiss the appeal alleging that the Court lacked subject matter jurisdiction over this case. In that motion, the respondents also contended that the governmental petitioners did not have standing to challenge the constitutionality of the HCI property tax levy. On January 19, 1999, the Court ruled on the respondents'

motion in a published order. See Lake County Council v. State Bd. of Tax Comm'rs, 706 N.E.2d 270 (Ind. Tax Ct. 1999). In that order, the Court concluded that it had subject matter jurisdiction over this case and therefore denied the respondents' motion to dismiss. However, the Court dismissed all but one of the governmental petitioners (Lake County) because they did not have standing to challenge the constitutionality of the HCI property tax levy.See footnote 4
    Although the Court found that Lake County did not have standing to challenge the propriety of the HCI property tax levy, Lake County did have an legally cognizable interest in the outcome of this case. If the HCI property tax levy is ultimately declared unconstitutional, Lake County could be liable for a large number of refunds. See id. at 281. This could potentially overwhelm the Lake County General Fund. Accordingly, the Court held that due to this possibility, Lake County could remain in this litigation to protect its interest in the integrity of the Lake County General Fund.
    On February 10, 1999, the respondents, via motion, asked this Court to reconsider its order in light of a modification to an Indiana Supreme Court decision. The Court agreed to reconsider its order, and accordingly, stayed all proceedings in this case pending the Court's reconsideration of its order. On April 14, 1999, the Court issued an order denying the respondents' motion to reconsider. See Montgomery v. State Bd. of Tax Comm'rs, 708 N.E.2d 936 (Ind. Tax Ct. 1999). The Court lifted its stay of the proceedings. On April 29, 1999, the respondents filed a motion requesting that

the Court certify its denial of the respondents' motion to dismiss and motion to reconsider for interlocutory review. On May 10, 1999, the Court certified its denial of the respondents' motions for interlocutory review. On June 18, 1999, the Indiana Supreme Court granted interlocutory review of the Court's denial of the respondents' motions.
    In the meantime, on April 20, 1999, the petitioners renewed their petition to enjoin collection of the HCI property tax pending the outcome of this original tax appeal. On that same day, Lake County, pursuant to Trial Rule 22, filed a petition seeking to interplead the funds it collected pursuant to the HCI property tax levy instead of forwarding those funds to the State. On May 28, 1999, the Court received evidence and heard argument on the renewed petition to enjoin and the petition to interplead.

THE HCI PROGRAM
The HCI program was enacted as a means of funding cost-free emergency medical care for the poor. See Lake County Council, 706 N.E.2d at 273 (citing Lutheran Hosp. v. State Dep't of Pub. Welfare, 571 N.E.2d 542, 544 (Ind. 1991); St. Mary's Med. Ctr. v. Warrick County, 671 N.E.2d 929, 931 (Ind. Ct. App. 1996), trans. denied.). The HCI program reimburses providers of emergency medical care to the indigent for their expenses from the state HCI fund. See Ind. Code §§ 12-16-7-1, -3, -4 (1998). The HCI program is funded through ad valorem property taxes as well as bank taxes and motor vehicle taxes. See Lake County Council, 706 N.E.2d at 273 (citing Ind. Code § 12-16-14-1 (1998)). The monies generated by these taxes are first placed into a county HCI fund. See Ind. Code §§ 12-16-14-1, -5 (1998). Thereafter, the

monies placed into the county HCI fund are forwarded to the state HCI fund. See Lake County Council, 706 N.E.2d at 273 (citing Ind. Code § 12-16-14-6 (1998)).
    The property tax component of the HCI program is imposed by the fiscal body of each county and is collected like any other ad valorem property tax. See id. (citing Ind. Code § 12-16-14-2 (1998)). In imposing the property tax, the county fiscal body has no discretion as to the rate of the tax because the tax levy is determined by a statutory formula. See id. (citing Ind. Code § 12-16-14-3 (1998)). The State Board reviews a county's property tax levy for compliance with the statutory mandate. See id. (citing Ind. Code § 12-16-14-4 (1998)).
    As it stands today, the HCI program is the product of an evolutionary process. It is therefore helpful to review how the HCI program has evolved over the years. Prior to 1987, county departments of public welfare were liable for reimbursements to providers of emergency medical care to the indigent under HCI program. See Ind. Code § 12-5- 6-6 (1982) (repealed 1992). In discharging this liability, counties were required to budget for anticipated HCI expenditures (and all other public welfare expenditures except poor relief) and were required to impose a property tax levy sufficient to meet these anticipated expenditures. See generally Ind. Code §§ 12-1-11-1 to -3 (Supp. 1986) (repealed 1992). This system led to widely varying levy rates for payment of HCI costs (which were, of course, a function of the value of the taxable property in the particular county and the anticipated HCI expenditures of that county) between the counties.
    Effective 1987, the Indiana General Assembly substantially changed the HCI

system. County and state HCI funds were created. The county HCI funds received the monies generated by bank taxes, motor vehicle taxes and a dedicated property tax levy. See Ind. Code § 12-5-6-16(a) (Supp. 1986) (repealed 1992). The monies in the county HCI fund were required to be forwarded to the state HCI fund on a monthly basis. See Ind. Code § 12-5-6-16(h) (Supp. 1986) (repealed 1992). Payments to providers of emergency medical care to the indigent became the responsibility of the state department of public welfare and were made from the state HCI fund. See Ind. Code § 12-5-6-6 (Supp. 1986).
    Because payment to providers was now a state responsibility,See footnote 5 the method of calculating the HCI property tax levy changed as well. No longer did the counties have to anticipate how much they would be obligated to spend under the system. Instead, the property tax levy for each county was to be calculated by a formula that took into account historical HCI expenditures in the particular county and the average statewide assessed value growth quotient.See footnote 6 See id.; see also Lake County Council, 706 N.E.2d at 273 n.2. This formula for calculating the property tax levy preserved the differences in property tax rates for payment of HCI costs between the counties. For the taxes first due and payable in 1987 and 1988, the formula was adjusted based on actual HCI expenditures within each county, see Ind. Code § 12-5-6-16(e) (Supp. 1986) (repealed

1992); however, for the subsequent years, the HCI property tax levy was calculated by multiplying the previous year's levy by the statewide average assessed value growth quotient. See Ind. Code § 12-5-6-16(d) (Supp. 1986) (repealed 1992). This statutory formula, though recodified, continues until the present day. See Ind. Code § 12-16-14- 3 (1998); Lake County Council, 706 N.E.2d at 273 n.2. Thus, from the 1989 tax year until the present tax year the HCI property tax levy for each county has not been “updated” based on actual HCI expenditures in the particular county. Moreover, the county fiscal bodies in imposing the HCI property tax have absolutely no discretion in determining the HCI property tax levy. See Lake County Council, 706 N.E.2d at 273, 281.    
    In 1993, one year after the General Assembly recodified the HCI program, see Act of Feb. 4, 1992, No. 2, § 10, 1992 Ind. Acts 177, 396-410, the General Assembly substantially changed the HCI program to allow $35,000,000 of the state HCI fund to be used to procure federal Medicaid matching funds, or in the language of the appropriations bill, “special Medicaid revenue.” See Act of June 30, 1993, No. 277, § 8, 1993 Ind. Acts 4555, 4642-43. This money was appropriated before any payments to providers were made from the state HCI fund. ID. Once the federal Medicaid matching funds were received, the budget director was required to return any funds received in excess of $45,000,000 to a maximum of $18,000,000 to the state HCI fund. This money was then used to pay HCI providers under Ind. Code § 12-16-7-4 (1998). The “special Medicaid revenue” generated by using state HCI monies was used to

make payments to disproportionate share hospitalsSee footnote 7 in lieu of HCI payments. See Ind. Code Ann. § 12-15-16-1 to 19-10 (West 1994 & Supp. 1998); Memorandum From Alan Gossard, Senior Fiscal Analyst to Rep. Thomas Alevizos 2-3 (July 13, 1998); see also Ind. Code § 12-15-15-8 (1998) (repealed 1998).
    In 1995, the General Assembly once again changed the HCI program. See Act of May 1, 1995, No. 156, § 1, 1995 Ind. Acts 3120, 3120-21. This change eliminated the return of monies used to procure federal Medicaid matching funds to the state HCI fund, for payment of HCI claims. Instead, the $35,000,000 appropriated from the state HCI fund, see Act of May 11, 1995, No. 340, § 8, 1995 Ind. Acts 4292, 4388-89, was used to make Medicaid payments to hospitals in lieu of HCI payments. See Ind. Code § 12-15-15-8 (as amended 1995) (repealed 1998). Under the 1995 amendment, the hospitals received lump sum payments in addition to their base inpatient payment rate. This payment was based on HCI payments during fiscal year 1992 divided by the total Medicaid patient days during that period. See id.         
    By 1998, the state HCI fund had grown to approximately $17,000,000, and in that year, the General Assembly once again tinkered with the HCI program. The $17,000,000 balance was used to leverage more federal Medicaid matching funds. In addition, the General Assembly mandated certain intergovernmental transfers from hospitals to the Medicaid indigent trust fund created under Ind. Code § 12-15-20-2 (1998) (amended 1998), to procure additional federal Medicaid matching funds and to

pay the state's share of disproportionate share payments. See Ind. Code Ann. § 12-15- 1-1.1 (West Supp. 1998); see also Letter from Frank J. Sabatine. Chairman, State Board of Tax Commissioners, to Troy Montgomery, President, Lake County Council and Ms. Frances S. DuPey 3 (June 5, 1998) (discussing intergovernmental transfers in fiscal year 1995). Furthermore, the General Assembly provided that under Ind. Code Ann. § 12-15-15-9(c), increased payments will be made to hospitals located in counties that have a higher HCI property tax levy.See footnote 8 Finally, the General Assembly disqualified providers eligible for payment under section 12-15-15-9 for payments from the state HCI fund. See Ind. Code Ann. § 12-16-7-11 (West Supp. 1998).
    As can be seen, the HCI program has evolved over the past thirteen years. What was once a means for counties to pay for emergency medical care for indigent persons within those counties, is now a critical part of Indiana's system of publicly funded health care. Though the HCI program has undergone significant changes, the property tax levy formula has not. As noted above, because the HCI property tax levy formula is based on an extrapolation of historical HCI costs in each particular county, there is a disparity between the HCI property tax rates of Indiana's ninety-two counties. The effect that this disparity has on Lake County taxpayers is demonstrated by the fact that in 1997, Lake County taxpayers, who owned property totaling 6.46% percent of the total assessed value in Indiana paid 41% of the HCI property taxes collected. (Aff'd of William Washienko, Ex. D). The petitioners have filed an original tax appeal to change

this. They believe that Lake County taxpayers are entitled to have an HCI property tax levy that is uniform throughout Indiana.

THE PETITIONERS' MOTIONS
The Petition to Enjoin the Collection of the HCI Property Tax
    The petitioners who are individual taxpayers have filed a petition to enjoin the collection of the HCI property tax in Lake County pursuant to Ind. Code § 33-3-5-11 (1998) and Trial Rule 65. As the parties seeking the extraordinary remedy of a preliminary injunction, the petitioners bear the burden of demonstrating to the Court
that they are entitled to that remedy. See Keller v. Department of State Revenue, 530 N.E.2d 787, 790 (Ind. Tax Ct. 1988), appeal dismissed. When reviewing a petition to enjoin the collection of a tax, the Court is guided by section 33-3-5-11. Section 33-3-5- 11 provides in pertinent part:
    [T]he tax court may enjoin the collection of a tax pending the original tax appeal
    if the tax court finds that:

    (1) the issues raised by the original tax appeal are substantial;

    (2) the petitioner has a reasonable opportunity to prevail in the original tax     appeal; and
    
    (3) the equitable considerations favoring enjoining the collection of the tax     outweigh the state's interest in collecting the tax pending the original tax appeal.
    
    All three conditions must be satisfied before the Court may enjoin the collection of a tax. Therefore, the Court, if it finds that one of these conditions is not present in this case, must deny the petition to enjoin the collection of a tax. In this case, the Court finds that the petitioners have not demonstrated that the equitable considerations

favoring enjoining the collection of the HCI property tax in Lake County outweigh the state's interest in the collection of that tax pending the outcome of this original tax appeal. Consequently, the Court must deny the petitioners' petition.
    In evaluating the equitable considerations surrounding a petition to enjoin the collection of a tax, this Court has drawn on the general body of case law concerning preliminary injunctions. American Trucking Ass'ns v. State, 512 N.E.2d 920, 923 (Ind. Tax Ct. 1987). Under that body of case law, the Court must consider whether the petitioners will suffer irreparable harm if the injunction is not granted, balance the harm to the petitioners if the petition is not granted with the harm to respondents if the relief is granted, determine whether the public interest will be adversely affected, and determine whether the petitioners can post sufficient security to cover costs and damages that the respondent may suffer if the respondent is wrongfully enjoined. See American Trucking Ass'ns, 512 N.E.2d at 923.
    As a starting point for its analysis, the Court notes, as have the respondents, that at this moment, this case only involves a few taxpayers. Therefore, assuming arguendo that the petitioners are indeed correct in their assertions that the HCI property tax levy is unconstitutional, vindication of their claims will only involve a small amount of money. They therefore cannot be heard to complain about how much money Lake County taxpayers will lose if the HCI property tax levy continues without an injunction from this Court.
    In making this determination, the Court is aware of the fact that this case has the potential to become a class action and that the petitioners may become class

representatives. However, the petitioners have not cited any authority requiring the Court, in evaluating a petition for a preliminary injunction, to consider the possibility of harm to putative members of a class that has not yet been certified. Moreover, the Court notes that certification of this case as a class action is not a foregone conclusion. If on interlocutory appeal, the Indiana Supreme Court holds that the refund procedures provide the petitioners with an adequate remedy, Lake County taxpayers, before they can be a part of a class action, will be required to comply with all statutory procedures for filing an original tax appeal. See Ind. Code § 6-1.1-15-15 (1998). As a result, the certification of the putative class is not so inevitable that the Court must, in fairness, consider the possibility of harm to Lake County taxpayers in general. Consequently, the Court must reject the petitioners attempt to pick up the cudgel for Lake County taxpayers. At this point, they are only fighting this battle for themselves.See footnote 9
    
Although the amount of money required to vindicate the petitioners' claims (if those claims are ultimately successful) is small, the impact of enjoining the collection the HCI property tax from the petitioners could be great. As discussed above, HCI property taxes are used to procure federal Medicaid matching funds. As pointed out by the respondents, the receipt of federal Medicaid matching funds is extremely important. The public interest (which, incidentally, includes the interest of Lake County hospitals) would be harmed by any action by the Court to jeopardize the ability of the state to

continue to procure federal Medicaid matching funds.See footnote 10 Moreover, the Court notes that Indiana receives federal Medicaid matching funds in excess of those used to procure those funds. At present, Indiana receives almost two federal dollars for each state HCI dollar. Therefore, if funds are unavailable, the state will irrevocably lose two dollars for

every dollar that is not collected.See footnote 11 In addition, the petitioners, if they are ultimately successful, will receive an adequate remedy. See Lake County Council, 706 N.E.2d at 278 n.15. Thus, the harm to the state if the injunction is granted outweighs the harm to the petitioners if it is not, and as a result, the equitable considerations do not favor the issuance of an injunction. This is so notwithstanding the large budget surplus the state is now fortunate enough to enjoy. Any loss in revenue is a harm whether there is a surplus or not.
    Consequently, the Court is forced to conclude that one of the statutory prerequisites for the enjoining of the collection of the HCI property tax is not present in this case. Thus, the Court is powerless to provide the relief the petitioners seek, and the Court DENIES the petitioners' petition.

Interpleader
    In its January 19, 1999 order, the Court determined that Lake County had a legally cognizable interest in these proceedings due to the possibility of the Lake County general fund being overwhelmed by refund claims if the HCI property tax levy is declared unconstitutional. Lake County Council, 706 N.E.2d at 281. Therefore, the Court allowed Lake County to remain in this action. See id. Lake County has now filed a motion, pursuant to Trial Rule 22, seeking interpleader. Specifically, Lake County

seeks to deposit $14,194, 695See footnote 12 in HCI property tax revenue that is required to be transferred to the state HCI fund today in an interest bearing account pending resolution of this case. Lake County contends that this will protect Lake County's ability to give refunds to Lake County taxpayers if the HCI property tax is declared unconstitutional.
    Historically, the purpose of interpleader was protect parties from double liability by allowing them to deposit a stake with a court and force all claimants to that stake to litigate their claims in one action. See Indianapolis Colts v. Mayor and City Council of Baltimore, 741 F.2d 954, 957 (7th Cir. 1984), cert. denied, 470 U.S 1052, 105 S.Ct. 1753, 84 L.Ed.2d 817 (1985). The remedy of interpleader is equitable in nature. See id.; 2 William F. Harvey, Indiana Practice, Rules of Procedure Annotated 273-74 (1987). As a result, general principles of equity will inform the Court in its determination of whether interpleading the HCI property tax revenues is proper in this case.
    Lake County's argument is simple. Lake County points out that if a class of all Lake County taxpayers is certified that class will have claims to the approximately $14,000,000 that Lake County seeks to interplead. Lake County then points to the state's “claim” to those very same funds pursuant to the requirement that the funds be forwarded to the state. Lake County then states that it could be subject to double

liability, thus giving it the right to interpleader. See Ind. T. R. 22(A).
    Lake County is correct in that payment of the HCI property tax revenues may not discharge its future liability for property tax refunds and that there are serious questions about how taxpayers, if the HCI property tax levy is declared unconstitutional, will be made whole. See Lake County Council, 706 N.E.2d at 277-79, 281. In addition, although the putative class has not been certified, Lake County can point to the possibility of certification of the class as justifying interpleader.
    However, this is not the end of the inquiry. The Court notes that it is dealing with tax revenues, tax revenues that are to be forwarded to the state. This is not a typical interpleader action as where a life insurance company seeks to interplead two claimants to insurance proceeds. See, e.g., United Farm Bureau Family Life Ins. Co. v. Fultz, 176 Ind. App. 217, 375 N.E.2d 601 (1978). For the reasons described above, granting interpleader in this case would necessarily interfere with the administration and funding of the Indiana's public health care system. This, the Court will not do. As stated above, interpleader is an equitable remedy. In equity, the Court will not grant relief which is against the public interest. See Schwartz v. Holycross, 83 Ind. App. 658, 149 N.E. 699, 701 (1925); see also Wells v. Auberry, 429 N.E.2d 679, 683 (Ind. Ct. App. 1982) (“Courts of equity may, and frequently do, go much further both to give and withhold relief in furtherance of the public interest than they are accustomed to go when only private interests are involved.”) (quoting Yakus v. United States, 321 U.S. 414, 440-41, 64 S.Ct. 660, 675, 88 L.Ed. 834 (1944)) (emphasis added). For these reasons, the Court DENIES Lake County's petition for interpleader.


CONCLUSION
    For the above stated reasons, Court DENIES the petitioners' petition to enjoin the collection of the HCI property tax and DENIES Lake County's petition for interpleader.
IT IS SO ORDERED.

                                    ____________________
                                    Thomas G. Fisher
                                    Judge, Indiana Tax Court


DISTRIBUTION:

Peter L. Benjamin
1000 East 80th Place, Suite 514S
Merrillville, IN 46410

Gerald M. Bishop
2115 West Lincoln Hwy.
Merrillville, IN 46410

John S. Dull
8300 Mississippi Street, Suite F
Merrillville, IN 46410

Jeffrey A. Modisett
Attorney General of Indiana
By: Angela L. Mansfield
Beth H. Henkel
Deputy Attorneys General
Indiana Government Center South, Fifth Floor
402 West Washington Street
Indianapolis, IN 46204-2770


Footnote:     1The Court notes that the named petitioners in this case have been changed. The Court has no record of whether parties have been dismissed or joined in this case. The Court trusts that the petitioners' counsel will clear up the matter at the earliest possible opportunity.
Footnote:     2The Court has substituted the names of the present Auditor and Treasurer of this State. See Ind. T. R. 25(F)(1).
Footnote:     3The Court has not ruled on the certification of the class action.
Footnote:     4The propriety of the Court's dismissal of the governmental petitioners has not been challenged.
Footnote:     5A 1992 recodification of the HCI program recognized this fact. Ind. Code § 12- 16-7-2(b) (1998) requires that payments from the state HCI fund be made without regard to the county of admission and without regard to the county's transfer to the state HCI fund.
Footnote:     6As the respondents point out in their briefs, although the formula lacks flexibility and responsiveness to changing conditions, the formula does provide certainty.
Footnote:     7A disproportionate share hospital is one that provides services to a disproportionate share of Medicaid eligible patients. See Ind. Code Ann. § 12-15-16-1 (West Supp. 1998).
Footnote:     8Pursuant to subsection 12-15-15-9(c), Lake County providers received payments totaling $6,757,188 in April 1999. (Aff'd of William Washienko ¶ 12).
Footnote:     9This should come as no surprise to the petitioners. The Court has previously rejected the petitioners' attempts to assert the rights of Lake County taxpayers whom they represent. See Lake County Council, 706 N.E.2d at 281. The Court's view has not changed since then.
Footnote:     10The Court notes that the respondents continue to contend that the Court should reconsider its previous decisions that the Court does not have subject matter jurisdiction over this case. Such argument is proper under Trial Rule 54(B), which provides that a Court's decision is subject to revision before final entry of judgment. In support of their contention, the respondents now point to sections 6-1.1-26-5 and 6-1.1- 27-6 of the Indiana Code. These statutory provisions (which were only pointed out to the Court after its previous decisions in this case) do not seem to advance the respondents' cause. Subsection 6-1.1-26-5(b) states that the county auditor may recoup refund payments made by a county general fund from the gross tax collections of the taxing units for which the refunds were originally paid. In light of the fact that the county, not the state, imposes the HCI property tax, thus making the county, not the state, the taxing unit, see Ind. Code § 6-1.1-1-21(1998), it is difficult to see how this statutory provision alleviates the Court's concerns outlined in its previous decisions. Subsection 6-1.1-27-6(b) allows county auditors to recoup erroneous or improper payments to the state treasury. In light of the fact that there is already a statutory provision governing how refunds are to be dealt with, it is difficult to see how this statutory provision could be construed to govern refunds of HCI property taxes. Moreover, that a tax is refunded does not mean that the tax was erroneously or improperly forwarded to the state in the first place.
    In any event, the Court is confident that all of these issues will be addressed by the Indiana Supreme Court, and therefore, this Court need not definitively address the respondents' contentions now. However, the Court points out the respondents' contentions because the respondents' litigation position that the refund process is an adequate remedy could have the effect of jeopardizing the ability of the state to procure federal Medicaid matching funds. If the HCI property tax levy is declared unconstitutional, and if Lake County taxpayers file refund claims, they will be entitled to refunds for three previous tax years. Those refunds will necessarily lessen the amounts forwarded to the state HCI fund in the future (under the respondents' view of subsection 6-1.1-26-5(b)). If many taxpayers file refund claims, the state HCI fund could lose all or most of Lake County's contribution. However, if the administrative remedies are inadequate, the three-year refund period of section 6-1.1-26-1 may not be applicable, and the Court may only be allowed to provide prospective relief.
    

Footnote:     11Under Ind. Code § 12-16-15-1 (1998), the state may advance money to the state HCI fund. However, under Ind. Code § 12-16-15-3 (1998), the state may only advance an amount expected to be received within the next six months. Because this litigation, if funds are withheld, the state may not be able to expect receipt of those funds within six months and therefore could not advance any money to cover the shortfall.
Footnote:     12The $14,194,695 represents the difference between the expected HCI property tax revenue and the amount of money (approximately $2,759,825) that Lake County contends would be paid by Lake County taxpayers if the HCI property tax levy rate were uniform throughout Indiana. (Aff'd of Marilyn Meznarick ¶¶ 7-9).

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