About a month ago a Broad Ripple business person told me the outrageous amount she had to pay in property tax.
Taxes are necessary for our society to function. Some people and non-people get passes on that particular tax.
Yesterday I saw an item posted about Indy’s food trucks. These are not restaurants on wheels. A restaurant provides its patrons with a table and chairs at which those patrons may enjoy the meal provided. Food trucks are delivery vans made over to serve food out of a kitchen in what had been the cargo area of the van. Food is served out of a side opening.
This sounds like a great idea. But what about local restaurants with whom the food trucks compete? The owners of those restaurants pay property taxes. They also provide seats, tables, and restrooms for their patrons. If I owned a restaurant and saw a food truck pull up outside my establishment, I would be upset.
The lingo to describe this cultural development has a familiar ring. In a couple of articles I have read, food trucks are compared to brick-and-mortar or brick-and board stores. Those are the same distinctions that were made when Amazon and other on-line vendors began to drive out of business physical stores. Amazon has contributed to Indiana’s economy, in a way. If you will remember, several months ago, Kentucky refused to give Amazon a "pass" on sales and use taxes for distribution centers Amazon had located in the Bluegrass State. Governor Daniels was not shy. He was able to entice Amazon over the Ohio River and Indiana picked up approximately 1,500 jobs that paid a bit over minimum wage and offered no benefits. In the meantime, we have lost, according to a Butler University study, about half-a-billion dollars in sales and use taxes through such arrangements. That half-billion dollars is nothing. Accounting errors of that magnitude happen all the time here.
I will not (unless I have little or no choice, i.e., no other lanes are open or I am in a hurry because of an emergency) use the automatic lane in a grocery store. For different reasons I shall not frequent a food truck. The City-County Council (now here I am in dreamland) should impose some sort of tax on the food trucks. They have an unfair advantage over the store owners.
Besides, where will the City get the money to pay for the next year of Pacers subsidies?