Skip to main content
Senate Bill 0526


Senate Bill 0526

ARCHIVE (2011)

Latest Information

 

DIGEST OF SB526 (Updated April 21, 2011 4:12 pm - DI 84)


Government matters. Provides that in all townships (including townships in Marion County and outside Marion County), the part of the total township tax rate that is not related to providing fire protection services or paying bonds, loans, and leases related to fire protection services may not exceed 5% of the total tax rate imposed for the year on a person's property within a taxing district. Amends the fire consolidation statutes (effective January 1, 2013) applicable to Marion County to provide for consolidation if: (1) the legislative body of the consolidated city adopts an ordinance to consolidate a township fire department into the fire department of the consolidated city; and (2) the trustee of that township and the mayor approve the ordinance. Specifies that trustees in townships in Marion County that have not consolidated fire departments retain the duty to provide fire protection. Authorizes the consolidation of an excluded city's fire department into the fire department of the consolidated city if: (1) the legislative body of the excluded city, after approval by the executive of the excluded city, adopts an ordinance approving the consolidation; and (2) the legislative body of the consolidated city adopts an ordinance, approved by the mayor of the consolidated city, approving the consolidation. Specifies that the consolidated fire department and the consolidated law enforcement department are divisions of the department of public safety. Provides that for a firefighter who, after the consolidation, becomes a firefighter employed by the consolidated fire department: (1) the time served by such an individual as a firefighter with the consolidated fire department shall also include the total time served by the individual as a firefighter with the township fire department in which the individual was serving at the time of the consolidation; and (2) the hire date of such an individual is the date the individual was hired as a firefighter by the township department in which the individual was serving at the time of consolidation. Provides that an individual who becomes a firefighter employed by the fire department of the consolidated city through the consolidation of township fire protection services after 2010 may not have the individual's merit rank reduced below the merit rank held by the individual on January 1, 2011, as a firefighter employed by a township fire department. Requires a township or fire protection territory that has not consolidated into the consolidated fire department to coordinate with the consolidated fire department: (1) to ensure sufficient fire protection coverage throughout the consolidated city; and (2) to achieve savings through joint purchasing. Provides that the maximum property tax levy of a consolidated city for property taxes first due and payable in the year following a fire department consolidation shall be increased by an amount equal to the combined maximum property tax levies of each consolidating entity for property taxes first due and payable for fire protection and related services in the year in which the fire department consolidation occurs. Provides that for three years after a consolidation of a fire department, the consolidated city may levy a tax above the maximum property tax levy for the fire special service district in each township or excluded city that is necessary to phase out borrowing for fire and emergency services, and that thereafter the tax rate for the consolidated fire department must be uniform within the entire service area served by the consolidated fire department. Provides that a township employee may not lose their employment as a result of their transfer to county employment. Provides that the hire date of an employee is the date the employee was hired by the township. Provides the following with regard to a trustee, constable, small claims court judge, or employee of the township: (1) The vacation time accrued transfers when the individual becomes a county employee. (2) The individual is entitled to receive the same salary that the individual received from the township. (3) The salary and benefits of an individual may not be reduced by the county legislative body before January 1, 2015, and only as otherwise permitted by law. Provides that the township trustee (and not any county official or employee) remains responsible for and retains the powers and duties related to hiring, supervising, disciplining, and firing those employees. Provides for the following transfers of township offices and functions to city and county government in Marion County: (1) Provides the operations of the township small claims courts shall be accounted for in the county budget beginning January 1, 2012. Provides that the township trustee prepares the trustee and small claims court budgets. (2) The township duties and responsibilities concerning weed control and parks and recreation are transferred to the consolidated city on January 1, 2013. (3) Township trustees shall administer township assistance and maintain township cemeteries after December 31, 2013. (4) Township boards are abolished on January 1, 2013, with the county legislative body as their successor. (5) Township government is abolished on January 1, 2013, and statutes related to township government in a county having a consolidated city are repealed. Specifies that after abolition of a township government, the territory of the township comprises a taxing district for the payment of township indebtedness existing at the time of the abolition. Exempts from the property tax levy limits any amounts imposed by the consolidated city or the county to fund former township indebtedness. Provides that a transfer of duties between the townships and the county results in the transfer of property, equipment, personnel, records, rights, contracts, and indebtedness. Specifies that beginning July 1, 2011, the weed control board in a county having a consolidated city is the board of code enforcement. Adjusts the maximum property tax levy for the county to account for the transfer of other township powers and duties. Provides that the obligation of the controller of the consolidated city to place the tax rate on the tax duplicate for the abolished township government, collect the tax, and pay it over to the proper creditors is subject to the approval of the county legislative body. Provides that each constable and deputy constable must successfully complete certain training courses. Specifies that beginning July 1, 2011, the police powers of a constable are to: (1) make arrests under a court order; (2) keep the peace in the court during court proceedings; (3) carry out the orders of the court; and (4) to take any police action for which the constable has received law enforcement training. Requires township trustees and constables in a county having a consolidated city to file an economic statement of interest form in the same manner required by the county legislative body for elected county officials. Provides that the city-county council may establish by ordinance other requirements for trustees and constables in the same manner as requirements for other elected county officials are established. Provides that money budgeted for a particular township's township assistance expenses and obligations shall, as provided in the budget adopted by the county fiscal body, be distributed to a township account established for that township and administered by that township's trustee. Specifies that township assistance expenses and obligations shall be paid by the township trustee from the amounts in the township's account. Requires a committee of township trustees or their designees to meet between January 1, 2013, and July 1, 2013, to develop a proposal for countywide township assistance standards and submit the committee's proposal to the county legislative body for its consideration. Provides that the city-county council may, by ordinance, establish standards for the provision of township assistance. Provides that before September 1, 2011, a township may not expend or encumber more than 5% of any fund without the written approval of the controller of the consolidated city. Specifies that in a county having a consolidated city, the annual operating budget of a building authority is subject to review and approval by the city-county legislative body. Specifies that: (1) the small claims courts operate independently from the circuit and superior courts; and (2) except for adopting the budget and approving salaries, the city county council does not have authority over a small claims court judge and the operations of a small claims court. Provides that the executive committee of the superior court does not have authority over a small claims court judge and the operations of a small claims court. Provides that if any funds remain from the county's share of small claims court administration fees after the payment of expenses of operating the small claims court, the remaining funds may be used to fund public safety programs in the county as set forth in an ordinance or resolution adopted by the city-county council. Specifies that the power of the sheriff to remove a special deputy at any time, without notice, and without cause, does not apply if the legislative body of Marion County establishes a merit system for special deputies. Specifies that in the case of a township that has not consolidated the township's fire department, the township's fire merit board after the township board is abolished shall consist of three members appointed by the township trustee and two members selected by the members of the fire department. Abolishes the Marion County board of commissioners effective January 1, 2015. Deletes references to township assessors in statutes applicable to Marion County. Deletes provisions specifying that in a county having a consolidated city, an ordinance or resolution of the legislative body approving or modifying the budget of a political subdivision that the legislative body is permitted by statute to review; is not subject to veto. Specifies that in a county having a consolidated city, a property tax levy appeal by a civil taxing unit, other than an excluded city, is subject to the review and approval of the county legislative body and is subject to veto by the county executive. Allows county option income tax (COIT) to be appropriated by the city-county council to any public library in Marion County. Requires the DLGF to adjust maximum permissible property tax levies and property tax rates as necessary to account for transfers of duties, powers, and obligations. Provides that the county treasurer (instead of the county executive) is the approving authority for the disposal of property obtained by tax default. Provides that effective January 1, 2012, the seven members of the Indianapolis-Marion County public library board are appointed as follows: (1) The mayor of the consolidated city appoints three members, of which not more than two may be of the same political party. (2) The minority leader of the city-county council appoints two members. (3) The majority leader of the city- county council appoints two members. Requires the department of local government finance to determine whether, with regard to a township in Marion County that does not operate a fire department or participate in a fire protection territory, the balance in a township's rainy day fund in addition to the township's other funds (other than debt service funds) exceeds the amount needed by the township to carry out the purposes of the fund. Provides for transfer of 90% of the excess fund amounts to a dedicated fund for each township to satisfy township debt obligations and, if no debt remains, reduce property taxes of the taxpayers of that township. Provides that taxpayer funds to support a township fire department may not be appropriated by the county legislative body for any other purpose except to fund that fire department, and the county legislative body may not reduce the tax rate of a township fire department or fail to adequately fund that fire department in an effort to force it to consolidate with the consolidated fire department. Provides that in a consolidated city, the administering department and the enforcement authority of the unsafe building law is the department authorized by ordinance. Provides that if work is done under an order to: (1) seal an unsafe building; (2) exterminate vermin; or (3) remove trash and debris; the work may be performed by a contractor awarded a contract to perform the work for the enforcement authority. Provides that bids may be solicited and a contract awarded for work on more than one property if the bid and contract include an allocation of the costs among the various unsafe premises in proportion to the work to be accomplished.
    Current Status:
     In Conference Committee
    >Latest Printing > (PDF)