Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Channel 13 Exposes Hoosier Lottery's Lavish New Offices

As I've said before, I do not know why Governor Mitch Daniels, who I like on so many levels, does not exercise stronger oversight when it comes to the state's agencies.  He seems to let agency heads do whatever they want and the result is stories like this one.  The video above is not to be believed.

Here is part of the written story:
13 Investigates has uncovered big questions about a multi-million dollar contract signed by the Hoosier Lottery.

The lottery claimed its new headquarters would save taxpayers money, but a look inside reveals what some are calling extravagant expenses. The accommodations are very nice and when it comes to the numbers, 13 Investigates found they don't add up.

The director of the Hoosier Lottery recently took Eyewitness News on a tour of the Lottery's new headquarters and what we saw inside made us ask a lot of questions.

Nine conference rooms - most decked out with brand new furniture - a massive break room and multiple coffee bars and lounges with new custom artwork, six microwaves, five refrigerators, three dishwashers, four flat screen TVs, even a workout room with brand new state-of-the-art equipment. It contains more than 35,000 square feet of office space - all for 83 employees.

Densborn said the lottery was running out of space at its old headquarters at the Pan Am Building downtown, so she decided to move out to a historic building on Meridian Street, where everything has been custom designed by the lottery.

"We have a lot more meeting rooms, we have small meeting rooms, we have large meeting rooms, we have made the employee break room, very, very large. So we could have our gatherings there," Densborn said. "I didn't expect to be moving, actually, so it kind of took on a life of its own once we started crunching the numbers and looking at everything, so here we are."

13 Investigates obtained both the new rental contract and the old one. Rent and parking used to cost $467,484 per year. Now, it costs $630,030 per year and that number will be going up to almost $700,000 during the life of the contract. Bottom line, over the next ten years, that would amount to an extra two million dollars.


Nicolas Martin said...

The Ogden fondness for certain politicians requires a form of denialism. It consists of focusing on the plusses and ignoring the minuses. So, for instance, when Daniels signs a bill requiring state licensing of massage therapists, which like all occupational licensing is clearly an immoral attack on the right to work, Ogden pushes it aside. He declares that his favorite politicians meets his 90 percent good standard. But this is a faux standard, utterly unquantified, and reliant on an unwillingness to confront reality.

No one is blinder than he who will not see.

Hoosiers for Indiana said...

The way I see it, is that someone gave Daniels a big contribution, and that person is being repaid with our tax dollars.

Ronald Rodgers

marksmall2001 said...

I do not understand why there is a need for multiple conference rooms for a state agency basically in charge of the numbers racket for the state. It is good that we legalized it; don't get me wrong. But why all the meetings? And nine at once? Tony Soprano was portayed as operating out of a threadbare office in the back of a strip joint.

Downtown Indy said...

Until the lottery starts forcing people to buy tickets, I don't see a problem with this.

The protracted uncertainty about Pan-Am plaza surely was a factor in their even considering a move at all.

M Theory said...

I work for one of the hottest dot coms in the country funded by private money.

You should see our bare bones offices. Not lavish, used office furniture, but yet we are very functional and blow out our goals month in and month out. My cube is hodge podged together with mis-matched furniture. But you know what? I am able to do my job just fine with something less than a fancy office.

The self-glorifying lottery director should be ashamed of how selfish she is with other peoples (the taxpayers) money.

Lottery clients are people buying tickets at a gas stations, for God's sake! She doesn't need lavish offices which are nicer than the governor or the mayor.

M Theory said...

Ask the governor to pick a fiscal conservative to run the lottery and terminate Kathryn Densborn.

And ask why the kids pictured with him on the link above are making what is known as the illumnati hand signal.

Citizen Kane said...

Not sure what you see in Mitch. I expected nothing less from his administration or from him. He selects these people and allows them to do what they do. He is as phony as they come.

But they are pretty nice digs paid for by the hopes / despair of mainly desperate people.

Louis said...

There are certain issues here that they should probably deal with so they can avoid further problems.

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Sheila said...

I agree with Citizen Kane. No one should be surprised by this. Daniels has a habit of picking agency directors who don't understand that what may go over in the private corporate world is not appropriate in the public sector.

I wonder if the Lottery's new digs are so large and lavish because they were to be used by Friends of Mitch at other state agencies. Why have nine conference rooms for a staff of 80?

Rosemary said...

It seems that the lottery business is really blooming seeing that they can afford those lavish offices that they do not need in the first place. It must be very comfortable working in a business that have all the funds for everything.

makati office space

Len Sandler said...

That office space looks really wonderful, thank you very much for sharing it.
virtual office