Parke County REMC's board of directors has authorized the local utility to pay a preliminary installment on this year's property taxes, even though the county hasn't issued tax bills yet. The process of reassessing property and adjusting billing amounts won't be completed until later this year. According to Robert McCullough, general manager, the cooperative's action should help local governments maintain adequate cash flow.
"We know that the new bills won't be coming out until September or October, and we didn't want the county to suffer a dip in their anticipated cash flow," explained McCullough. "So we estimated our first half (of this year's) taxes and cut a check for $147,726.15 and got it in as quickly as we could. Any adjustments that need to be made because of reassessment will be taken care of in the last-half billing."
In Indiana, locally owned electric cooperatives pay nearly $9 million in property taxes every year. Parke County REMC pays approximately $300,000 in property taxes to Parke, Putnam, Clay, Fountain, Montgomery and Vigo counties. In addition to annual property tax payments, the local Touchstone Energy cooperative has also contributed more than $140,000 to local causes through the REMC Multi County Community Trust: Operation Round-Up, general corporate giving, specific charitable events, etc.
"If early payment can help ease the financial burden of our local government agencies, then we're more than happy to do what we can," commented Parke County REMC's board president Jerry McMullen. "We're part of this community, too, and count on the same services as everyone else. We're all in this together."