It is any mayor’s responsibility to clearly announce proposed tax increases and defend their necessity to taxpayers. Unfortunately, I do not believe Mayor (Scott) Fadness lived up to this responsibility when presenting the 2020 Municipal Budget at the September Fishers City Council meeting.
Many things concerned me about Mayor Fadness’s presentation, including:
- He did not acknowledge that this would be the fifth consecutive year of increases to the property tax rate in Fishers.
- He offered no proof that a tax rate hike is necessary despite higher tax revenues generated by the projected increase in property values alone.
- He delivered the presentation with his backside to the public, facing a city council prepared to rubber stamp his agenda.
If I am elected to city council, I would demand that the presentation of proposed municipal budgets be considerate to taxpayers. The mayor should stand facing residents, clearly explain his proposal and explicitly ask for residents’ support. Tax increases are serious. They deserve a serious and honest dialogue between city and residents.
Unfortunately, residents missed the opportunity provided by the council to speak out on this proposal at a public hearing. But it’s not too late to contact your councilor and share your concerns.
Jocelyn Vare, candidate for Fishers City Council, At-Large