As in the past, we are pleased to publish email from our readers. Here is something from Joe Berkemeier:
I read with dismay the letter (Daily Journal, February 16) from Curtis O’Brien, who ends by saying that “While probably being considered as shortsighted, I see no advantages in the creation of a town.”
The incorporation of White River Township into a town has clear advantages – primarily, it keeps WRT tax dollars in the area, and it allows White River Township residents to control how their area develops.
When I last looked at how the county spent the available money to fix roads in Johnson County in 2005, it became pretty apparent that White River Township was subsidizing the rest of the county. Roads in WRT were crumbling while the tax dollars paid by WRT residents were spent elsewhere in the county. Road taxes are just one example of taxes we pay now that will come back to support a new town without raising taxes one cent.
I am not surprised that the incorporation law may not take into account the incorporation of 35,000 people, because I suspect the people who wrote the law never thought a county would build subdivisions for three decades without forcing them to be a part of a neighboring city. Counties are not designed to support cities of 35,000 people.
These decades of poor planning decisions by the county have left WRT a city in all but the legal sense of the word. Greenwood and Bargersville have taken advantage of the situation and annexed almost all of the business areas in WRT, taking the taxes we pay on everyday items like food and clothes back to their towns to support their own residents and projects.
Not all is lost. Look into what the folks at Citizens for Center Grove are trying to do. It’s obvious to me that they’re trying to protect White River Township with a modern, right-sized town that would put their money back to work for them, protect their current way of life, and put them in control of their own destiny.
I urge you to visit their website at citizensforcentergrove.org and get educated.