HB1073Â (click to see official bill) is the initialÂ volley by the Central Indiana Transit Task Force toÂ state lawmakers. The summary of the bill is as follows:
Public mass transportation. Specifies that a county or city council (other than the city-county council of Marion County) may elect by ordinance to provide revenue to a public transportation corporation from the city’s or the county’s distributive share of county adjusted gross income taxes, county option income taxes, or county economic development income taxes. Authorizes the establishment of a regional transit authority and a metropolitan transit district by specified eligible counties through local public questions. Authorizes the metropolitan transit district to: (1) construct or acquire any public transportation facility; (2) provide public transportation service by operating public transportation facilities; and (3) issue bonds and otherwise incur indebtedness. Authorizes the Indiana finance authority to issue bonds and use the proceeds to acquire any obligations issued by a metropolitan transit district. Provides that in a county that has approved the local public question, an additional county economic development income tax (CEDIT) rate of not more than 0.2% may be imposed to pay the county’s contribution to the funding of the metropolitan transit district. Specifies that the CEDIT rate may not exceed the recommended tax.
We will do our best to track HB1073 and keep you all updated when there are changes. As members of the coalition supporting a transit referendum, we will be kept in the loop when something changes with the language of the bill, key milestones and such.
HB1073 can be traced back to the release of the initial Indy Connect plan in February of 2010. Urban Indy has feverishly offered input online, at public meetings, and even around the dinner table attempting to make urban transit a reality in Indiana. In a way, seeing this bill get introduced in a triumph. Seeing its passage and movement to a referendum in November would be an even bigger triumph.
The bill is scheduled for a hearing Thursday in the House Ways & Means Committee. Stay tuned folks! Hopefully, right to work doesn’t derail this.