I am writing in response to a letter to the editor by Mr. James J. Smith published Dec. 8. I take issue with several points he addresses in his letter.
First, I’m not sure Hamilton County property taxes are correctly tied to national political ideology. Property taxes are a county levy (not federal). The property tax you pay primarily funds local budgets – not federal entitlements. Therefore, a vote for president will have little, if any, impact on property taxes.
Additionally, in Indiana, multi-family residential property owners pay up to 2 percent of the value of their property while homeowners pay 1 percent. Property taxes are absolutely factored into monthly rent, so, in essence, renters pay double (per assessed dollar) what homeowners pay. That means renters are effectively funding local schools and infrastructure at a higher level than the homeowners.
Second, if you look at the down-ballot elections in Carmel and Hamilton County generally, you will see a decided consistency in comparison to prior elections where the GOP had overwhelming support from the voters. It appears that many Carmel Republicans rejected President Trump while otherwise overwhelmingly supporting traditional conservative ideology.
Also, your assertion that Current in Carmel is a part of the liberal media machine is laughable. Just google Terry Anker and tell me how many times you think MSNBC or CNN reaches out to him for comment.
Finally, and most fundamentally, I can’t disagree more about the impact of a changing demographic in Carmel. The Carmel community is developing a vibrancy and sustainability that was not present when we relocated our family here in 2004.
While a large part of that change is the private investment and infrastructure investment being made in many areas (we will skip discussion of the potential long-term impacts of public spending for now), I credit a younger and more diverse population for injecting some much-need energy. Yes, we want businesses to relocate their headquarters here, but what’s wrong with welcoming their young employees as well? Yes, we want robust infrastructure and good schools, but isn’t it possible those are elements that are attracting renters to Carmel? Who knows, they may even value a dedicated work ethic over “freebies” the same way you do. I think many, many Carmel residents saw something broader at issue than the risk of “asinine programs” in the last presidential election.
In closing, don’t worry, you can rest easy. I don’t think Carmel’s relative support for President-elect Biden last month signals a sweeping shift in political ideology. There is little chance that Carmel will “go blue” anytime soon.
Bill Spencer, Carmel