Marion County tax board wants to review all exempt low income housing due to dangerous conditions at north side apartments

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INDIANAPOLIS — A county tax board that slapped a north side apartment complex with a $400,000 tax bill earlier this year wants to review all properties with similar tax exemptions.

The Marion County Property Tax Assessment Board of Appeals, or PTABOA, revoked a charitable tax exemption at Lakeside Pointe at Nora Apartments, due to deteriorating conditions that led the health department to levy more than $50,000 in fines in less than two years.

In recent months, PTABOA board members have discussed reviewing all low income housing that receives the same charitable tax exemption, which includes six properties owned by JPC Charities, the owners of Lakeside Pointe at Nora. The exemption removes property tax bills for owners that provide charitable services in the form of low income housing.

“I’m grateful that they are taking this seriously,” said Patchwork Indy Executive Director Claire Holba.

Holba, who has worked with neighborhood groups to advocate for changes at Lakeside Pointe, said recent fires at the complex have scared many residents, who have reported dangerous conditions in their units.

“Residents are saying when’s it going to be us next or it going to happen to the vacant unit next to us,” Holba said.

FOX59 requested health department cases from the six additional JPC Charities properties, which include Fox Club, Covington Square, Woods at Oak Crossing, Capital Place, Woodhaven Park and Estates at Crystal Bay. While three of the complexes had minimal violations, inspectors opened 25 cases at Crystal Bay, 29 at Fox Club and 56 at Woods at Oak Crossing between January 1 and May 21, 2021.

“Our hope is that something similar might happen across the other six complexes if the situation is similar, that they are claiming to provide these charitable services and that they’re not doing that,” Holba said.

The board is still finalizing plans to review additional exemptions, which will likely happen in groups based on regions of the city, according to the Marion County Assessor. He said residents of all low income properties were welcome to provide testimony at any future monthly board meeting. You can view a schedule and minutes of board meetings at the link here.

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