More and more agribusinesses are relocating to Indiana, and many Indiana agribusinesses are expanding, in part because of the good business and good agricultural environment in our state. Jim Schellinger, President of the Indiana Economic Development Corporation, says Indiana has a reputation as a pro-agricultural state. And, while our state has been very successful in attracting new agribusinesses, there are some barriers that if not dealt with will limit our growth. One of them is maintaining our roads and bridges, “Road work is like laundry, it is never done.” Schellinger was speaking in Kosciusko County and expressed strong support for passage of a transportation bill now before the General Assembly.
Another barrier to growth is increasing property taxes, especially on farmland. McKinney said this could limit the growth of our agricultural production system, “We cannot see significant increases in property taxes when we have a prolonged period of lower crop prices.” Lowering the property tax assessment and capping farmland tax growth is a top priority of Indiana Farm Bureau and the Indiana Soybean Alliance. With the General Assembly set to adjourn on Thursday, farm groups are watching what happens to Senate Bill 308 very carefully.
Both men addressed a group of farm and business leaders at Grace College in Warsaw. The event, arranged by the Kosciusko County Community Foundation, stressed the common concerns and challenges that farmers and local businesses share.