Today, Purdue Economist Larry DeBoer will present a free webinar on the topic of Hints of Recovery: Indiana's State & Local Governments as the Recovery Begins. The webinar is scheduled for 1:30-4:00pm today (Thursday, May 26, 2011) and you are welcome to join us by clicking here.
You may also download the handout here. If you do decide to join us I would ask you to give us some feedback of the program by completing a VERY QUICK survey by clicking here. If you are viewing in a group setting and need a hardcopy of the evaluation you can find it here. Here is a little more information about today's program.
The end of April and the first weeks of May were important for Indiana state and local governments. The legislative session ended on time, on April 29, and the General Assembly passed a budget. Shortly before the end of the session, the state got the first up-beat revenue forecast in six years. Revenue projections increased by $762 million. That helped, of course, but Indiana’s budget for the coming biennium is still as tight as any in memory. That’s especially important for local schools, because school operating costs now depend almost entirely on state aid. Then came Election Day, May 3, and the voters decided seven school referenda. Each new round of referenda teaches us more about what influences yes and no votes. Then, property tax bills were due on May 10 in almost all the counties. In some counties taxpayers were unpleasantly surprised by tax bill increases, because of the loss of state and local homestead credits, and the increase in tax rates resulting from slow growth or decline in assessments. Higher tax bills make for more tax cap credits, and we now have data on tax cap credit revenue losses for many counties. Professor Larry DeBoer will discuss these and other important issues for local government.