Thursday, November 29, 2012


Following this morning's article on the West Lafayette Storm Water Utility fee in the J&C,  a couple of you emailed me with a comment or a question.

What do I think about the storm water ordinance?

Well, I think its late. About thirty years late. Our state is like a house without gutters. Indiana ranked 49th. in a Forbes Magazine survey of "America's Greenest States".  Poor water quality was one of the reason's why. It's about time we addressed storm water runoff.

I think its late. About three years late. For political reasons storm water fees and increased trash fees were pushed past the 2011 municipal elections. We could have done this in 2010, 2011, 2012. Many cities did this in the 1980's or 90's. They have lower fees. (

I think the $8.00 fee is unfair. This storm water tax is regressive. You can thank the Republican state legislature. Property taxes are capped. Fees are the new taxes. You might raise property taxes based on the value of your real estate to pay for storm water improvements. We can't do that. Instead Purdue vice-presidents with six figure salaries and Purdue widows on fixed incomes will pay the same additional $96 a year. Fairness, Republican style.

I am not impressed by the segregation of the funds. The new fund relieves the financial burden on waste water, which has been shouldering those costs and the monthly deficit on trash collection for years.

I think I'll vote for it. I'd love to have the Vine St. storm water interceptor make the projects list. I wish you could get a break for rain barrels or permeable pavement.

I think we'll all be talking about gutters, garbage cans and toilets again when we get to increasing the trash tax early next year.

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