Sunday, February 8, 2009

Star Debates CIB Options; Mayor Ballard Still Absent From Debate

Today's Indianapolis Star brings a front-page, above-the-fold story about the problems of the Capital Improvement Board operating deeply in the red and the options for bringing the books back into balance.

The Star also contains a small blurb on each of the CIB members, six of which were appointed by Mayor Ballard or former Mayor Peterson. A review of the summaries indicates that virtually every one of these members has ties directly or indirectly to wealthy corporate clients who benefit from the continuance of CIB's corporate welfare policies. There are no taxpayer advocates on the CIB. Anyone who has every watched a CIB meeting knows that the board members always ratify, usually without any question whatsoever, whatever the leadership of the CIB wants done. During the last meeting, it was announced that CIB had plans to give the Pacers $15 million more in taxpayer money. Not a single person spoke up against the plan.

It is time for the Mayor to exercise leadership and start removing members from the CIB if those members will not tender their resignations. The Mayor should start with the conflicted Bob Grand whose clients own the Pacers and whose request for more taxpayer money is at the heart of the administration's behind closed doors effort to secure more tax increases to support the billionaire sports owners. He is also on the board of the Indiana Sports Corporation which receives money from the CIB. But the Mayor should not stop with Grand. He needs to start replacing numerous board members with people who have the courage to stand up and question the plans to give wealthy sports owners more taxpayer money.

The Mayor though remains silent on the problems of the CIB and on his administration's behind-the-scenes effort to increase taxes to pay for a CIB bailout. The worst thing about Mayor Ballard being AWOL on an issue that screams for leadership is that it makes people like Democrats like Jen Wagner right. The city's taxpayers need leadership from the Mayor on the CIB financial fiasco and they are not getting it.


Patriot Paul said...

The bold-faced lies that some council member(s) stoop is an effort to rewrite partisan history. Sad that she denigrates herself and the council, as if the council hasn't had enough past credibility problems. If all this partisan hack can do is invent a blame game, she is part of the problem. I wonder if her constituents who are loosing their homes and their jobs think they are being represented with this blantant dishonest sniping.

Anonymous said...

The Star said that CIB add 52 people to operate the new Lucas Oil Stadium and had a $9.4 million increase in salary expense.

That's a salary of $180,769 PER PERSON.

Someone needs to look at the salaries of these CIB staff and what they actually do to earn that kind of change!

Anonymous said...

Why did CIB's land and building alterations, renovations, and repairs increase from $860,000 to $5 million on a NEW building thats cost is COMPLETELY covered by a seperate state entity??????

Anonymous said...

The Indy Star has posted the CIB budget and Colts contract on the Internet.

Lawyers, Accountants, and Bankers take a look and see what you think it will take to solve this problem.

Detailed CIB Budget

Colts Lease Agreement

Anonymous said...

Just as a side commentary, has anyone seen a "signed" copy of the Colt's lease? Every lease I have seen online is not signed. If we don't have a copy of the signed lease how can we be sure just what kind of a deal the Colts received?