"We think reorganization will eliminate the potential of other governmental entities around Washington Township annexing our properties," Bailey said. "By working together we'll have a strategic vision for maximizing Washington Township."
The study committee has worked on this proposal for the past year. Even a couple months in, Martin says there were serious questions as to whether consolidation was worth it. The committee discovered two arguments in favor. One was for Avon and its town limits.
"Right now, if you look at a town map, it looks like an ink blot on Washington Township," Martin said, noting that rural residents like him had trouble even knowing whom they were eligible to vote for and whether they lived in Avon or not.
He added that Plainfield has already begun annexing land in the southern portion of Washington Township.
"For Avon to be what it should be, or what it can be in the future, it needs to secure its boundaries," Martin said. Absorbing the township would make Avon's population nearly 40,000 - the largest in Hendricks County.
Another compelling argument for consolidation is that tax levels would stay the same for both rural and urban areas. That's because of what Martin calls a fluke in the way Hendricks County authorizes its County Adjusted Gross Income Tax (CAGIT).
Every time you buy something, you pay the state "x" amount and the county "x" amount. The part earmarked for the county actually goes to the state first, then is reallocated back to the counties based on each of their operating funds.
Washington Township currently has a multi-million dollar loan for operation of its fire and parks departments, which is renewed on an annual basis. This loan isn't counted in Hendricks County's CAGIT calculation, meaning the county isn't getting some $600,000 annually in taxes owed.