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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Opening Arguments


If this guy really has entertained thoughts of running for governor, a couple of words of advice: Forget it. As a matter of fact, you don't even deserve to be mayor:

Evansville Mayor Jonathan Weinzapfel went along with a secretive plan to kill Vanderburgh County's homestead tax exemption. As a result the Indiana Office of Management and Budget told the Evansville Courier & Press that Vanderburgh property taxes billed to homeowners are up 39 percent in 2009, while overall Indiana homeowner taxes are down an average of 7 percent.

The keywords in this sequence are “secret” and “property tax increase.” So Weinzapfel is facing a problem squared: he helped kill the homestead exemption in order to preserve his city's revenue, and that means he sparked a 39 percent tax increase.

What the mayor and other city and county officials in Vanderburgh County did was a little more outrageous than other efforts to screw the citizen, but it originates from the same attitude: Government must be supported not just at current levels but at ever-increasing levels, and more and more ways must be found to separate the taxpayer from as much of his hard-earned money as possible. Such officials have lost all sight of what they're supposed to be doing for whom. I'm sure Weinzapfel would say he did what he did "for the benefit" of city residents -- in fact, he says he's been "kicking himself" for allowing such an important decision to be made without public input, although it was not his intention to "mislead those who have entrusted me with this office." What self-serving