The Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce released a report last week recommending $1.1 billion in infrastructure improvements in the city and Marion County during the next 10 years, to be partially financed by $200 million of tax-exempt bonds.

The chamber recommended the City-County Council approve issuing $204 million of tax-exempt bonds for the plan over the next 10 years. Indianapolis and Marion County have a combined government.

Other recommended funding sources are:

* $478 million from a new 45% income tax on workers in Marion County. The City-County Council would need the approval of the Indiana Legislature to institute the tax.

* $111 million from increases in sewer fees.

* $283 million from the imposition of a new storm water discharge fee.

The money would be used to fund $583 million of street, curb, and sidewalk repairs, as well as $418 million of storm water drainage control projects. The city also would use $50 million for park improvements.

Ramon Humke, chairman of the commission and president of Indianapolis Power & Light Co., said the recommended plan was crucial to maintaining the metropolitan region's infrastructure and economic health.

"The link between an efficient infrastructure and a prosperous economy was recognized a century ago," he said. "Dissatisfaction with poor roads and sewers, in fact, prompted the founding of the Indianapolis Chamber in 1890."

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