Indianapolis – President Gray addressed the Department of Local Government Finance today at 2:30 P.M. His statement is attached.
Thank you for this opportunity to address you and to make some requests of you on behalf of the City County Council and the people of Marion County.
I am pleased that the Governor, in recognizing the tax burden on Marion County residents, has ordered the re-assessment of certain properties in the County. Since the law requires that Marion County pay the cost of re-assessment, I would like to take advantage of today's hearing by making the following requests:
1. That your order provide for a committee to oversee the re-assessment process. This committee will hold public meetings in an effort to keep our taxpayers informed on the progress of this important undertaking;
2. That the committee so ordered be composed of our County Commissioners, two (2) members appointed by the Council and two (2) members appointed by the Mayor with a ninth member appointed by the said committee members;
3. That the committee be chaired by the Marion County Assessor, Greg Bowes;
4. That the committee be empowered to engage and supervise the work of any technical advisors or professional advisors employed to complete the re-assessment;
5. That the Township Assessors become an advisory panel available to provide technical assistance to both the committee and the technical and / or professional advisors; and,
6. That the statutory province of the Council to fund the costs of re-assessment be observed including the detail of certain necessary Township employees to the office of the County Assessor through completion of the project, if necessary.
Last year, I personally made several requests from the Marion County townships assessors regarding the completion of the required trending only to be told that the work was either on schedule or the state had not settled on the final instructions. In my opinion a contributing factor that led to the turmoil of the tax bills was that there was no effective oversight at the county level.
By granting my requests you will have put into place a reassessment process that will be monitored and carried out by individuals who share a powerful sense of accountability to the taxpayer.
Thank you for listening and during this process please do not hesitate to call on me or my staff with any questions.