Writer says farmers are getting crushed by taxes

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Dear Editor,
In six years’ time, we’ve seen nearly a 400 percent increase in our property taxes. This year alone, the tax per acre for 2016 is $62. In 2016 we had to pay 14 percent in property tax alone of the total gross income per acre, not net, but total gross income. The cost of inputs continues to be out of hand while the price for corn and soybeans are 30 to 40 percent lower the past three years.
The term CAUV, Current Agricultural Use Value, has become a joke as the current costs and profits seemingly have no affect on property taxes the past few years. As farm income has been reduced by over 40 percent, the property taxes continue to climb — 30 percent higher just this year alone. The past year we paid nearly $12,000 in property taxes on 197 acres in one county.
I served as a township trustee for 15 years. The men I have served with and I did our best to represent the needs and concerns of our township. I have been greatly disappointed over the past few years as no one seems to care about this injustice which is taking place concerning property taxes. I can only imagine what our founding fathers would have to say about this situation as they stood against an unfair system of taxation.
It breaks my heart to think that our son, who is the fifth generation on this family farm, may not be able to continue to farm due in large part to rising costs of farming and the astronomical costs of property taxes.
I have contacted a number of state representatives, senators, commissioners, the auditor’s office and treasurers’ office, and the answer continues to be much the same — “We know it’s not right, but we can’t do anything about it.” Which takes me back to the beginning of this letter — Who really cares?
Mark Ryan
Route161, Irwin



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