EDITOR’S NOTE: A previous version of this article said the RDA was a co-sponsor of the movetoindiana.com campaign. In response to a public record request, RDA Attorney David Hollenbeck Stated “the RDA has not sponsored the “move to Indiana” campaign and the campaign’s utilization of the RDA logo was without the knowledge and/or approval of the RDA.” As of the publishing of this correction, the RDA is still listed as a sponsor on the movetoindiana.com website.
April 9, 2018-The Non-Elected bureaucrats at the South Shore Convention and Visitor’s Authority (SSCVA) has launched a website to try to lure Illinois residents to Indiana. Ironically, the website touts lower taxes as a reason for Illinois residents to choose Indiana. Unfortunately for those of us who already live here and have to constantly pay the tab for the incompetent and unaccountable SSCVA and RDA, our income tax rate is not lower than Illinois. While corporate income taxes are much lower, individual income taxes are the same or slightly higher than Illinois when you factor in the County Option Income Tax in Indiana. In some counties, the income tax in Indiana is a full 2% higher than Illinois with the county tax included. The SSCVA also touts the lower sales tax, while spending your hard earned money to push for an increase in the food and beverage sales tax.
Of course, the ad campaign does not try to lure Illinois residents to Hammond, Gary or East Chicago which have struggled with population losses over the past several decades. Instead, the ads feature the benefits of Dyer and Munster. The population of Dyer has nearly doubled since 1980 while the population of Munster has grown by about 20%. Perhaps promoting Hammond, Gary and East Chicago is simply too difficult for the SSCVA. After all, the plan to force a food and beverage tax on Lake County residents is purportedly for a convention center despite the fact that Gary has an underutilized convention center which has never been promoted by the SSCVA.
Wisconsin recently spent $1M on a campaign to try to lure millennials from Chicago. The success of any such campaign is difficult to guage but misleading people as to one of ten reasons to move here probably will not help your campaign.
As NIPSCO’s Don Babcock says “Get on Board or Get out” . . . what he didn’t say is that they will just find some Illinois people to replace you when you do.