Welcome!

My name is Anton Karl Neff and I represent District Two on the Owen County Council. Since taking office, I have worked hard to represent the district and Owen County. A conservative approach to budgeting has helped us stay afloat despite continued revenue and expense pressures on local government. Owen County is very fortunate to have little debt and healthy cash balances in many of our funds.  We also have an on-time budgeting and tax process.  With many economic and state regulation pressures, we have to continually monitor our county's budget status.  I support decisions and policies that promote efficiency in government and long-term financial planning.  We always need to find the right balance of providing effective services while maintaining our investment in our county government workforce at an efficient and reasonable cost to our taxpayers.

 

I hope that you find my website useful in finding out more about me and how to contact me. Your suggestions are always welcome. Most important, I want to hear your ideas and concerns regarding Owen County's local government. If I do not have an answer for your question, I will either find an answer or find a resource for you to get an answer. Open communication is very important to me. Thanks for visiting!

 


 

 

OWEN COUNTY LOCAL INCOME TAX

 

Did you know?  During a certain number of hours each day, the Owen County Sheriff's Department operates with an inadequate staffing level of jailers and dispatchers.  It's been a concern for years.  Additional staffing needed to fix the problem has been requested by our current and past Sheriffs but, we have unfortunately not had access to the resources to fund it.  In addition, we have funding deficits for our central dispatch operations in general, and courthouse security, that may need attention soon.

 

Just this year, the Governor signed into law several changes to the Local Income Tax (LIT) code for all Indiana counties, effective July 1, 2016.  Among those changes, counties now have the option of increasing their LIT rate to raise new revenue.  Public safety is one of the allowable purposes.

 

Over the next couple months, the council will be evaluating the latest revenue projections available and formulate budgets.  We are hopeful that normal growth in existing revenue sources, as well as the fine-tuning of final staff configurations, will shrink the overall amount needed. I cannot speak for the six council members that serve with me, but I’m sure they would agree that before increasing any tax rate to generate new revenue, we should exhaust all other ways to develop acceptable budgets within the current confines of existing tax revenue sources.  That includes cuts from other areas, taking advantage of any updated revenue capacity, and/or a phase-in over two or three budget years, to name some examples.

 

Owen County's LIT rate is currently at 1.3%.  It is estimated that up to $269,052.15 in funding is needed.  As of now, with no other offsets or changes in existing revenue, the possible LIT rate range that matches up to that amount is between 1.37% and 1.4%.  For a taxpayer earning $15/hour, a 1.37% rate would cost one additional penny per hour.  For a taxpayer earning $30/hour, a rate of 1.37% would cost two additional pennies, and so on.  Although we’re talking pennies, there is no amount too small that should preempt the public’s opportunity to provide feedback and ask questions.  I welcome, encourage, and expect it.

 

Here is a link to detailed tax impact data by rate and household taxable income:

 

Owen County Local Income Tax Impact

 

Please take a few moments to let me know your thoughts relating to this subject.  Here are some example questions I am interested in getting feedback on:

 

1) Is adequate staffing of jailers and dispatchers of importance to you?  To the county as a whole?

 

2) Are you generally supportive or opposed to the county council considering all options concerning the issues at hand?

 

3) If a rate change is made, do you consider a change from 1.3% to a new rate between 1.37% and 1.4% to be reasonable or unreasonable?

 

4) Are you generally supportive or opposed to adjusting the LIT by a small amount in order to address the concerns with jail and dispatch staffing?

 

5) What alternatives do you propose that can help us avoid changing the LIT rate?

 

6) Is there anything I can get for you in terms of additional information, or anything that needs further explanation?

 

Feel free to ask any follow up questions you may have. Thank you in advance for your time.

 

 

Latest Events

Owen County Council Regular Meeting
Owen County Courthouse, 2nd Floor Meeting Room
Mon Jan 08 @ 7:00PM

Paid for by Anton Karl Neff personally