Saturday, March 16, 2013

Indianapolis' Leaders Put Aiding Professional Sports Owners and Developers Ahead of Public Safety

This morning the Indianapolis Star has a lengthy article on the City's recent spike in homicides.  It includes discussion of a "new approach" to crime fighting.  I've heard that before...every few years.  While I do have more confidence in Public Safety Director Troy Riggs than his predecessor Frank Straub, at the end of the day he's limited by resources and priorities.

In 2007, Indianapolis raised local income taxes 65% to hire 100 new officers.  Instead of a 100 new officers, today we have 300 less.

Instead of just looking at crime fighting techniques, perhaps we should look at the City's priorities.  Over the past three years we have given the Pacers $43.5 million dollars.  We subsidize every politically-connected developer with our tax dollars. We are constantly creating new and expanded tax increment financing districts which take money away law enforcement and diverts that money to the pockets of developers, contractors, attorneys, architects and other professionals. We are making poor "investment" decisions, like handing a company $6.35 million to build a parking garage/commercial building in Broad Ripple and letting that company have 100% ownership and all the parking revenue and commercial rents derived from that building.  We spend millions of dollars creating poorly designed bike lanes that bikers rightfully won't use because they're not safe.

At the end of the day though people won't want to live in Indianapolis if they don't feel safe.  Public safety needs to be a priority in Indianapolis.  The word "priority" means a ranking.  Public safety should rank at the top of this City's list of priorities.  Right now it does not.

1 comment:

Flogger said...

Yes, another "New Approach" so many new approaches they are going in circles.

Limited Public Safety resources and the commitment to keep down town "Safe" and the Malls "Safe" leaves little for the Neighborhoods where crime happens.

Homicides would seem to fall into two general categories, excluding the spree killers. 1.) Directed killings as a part of a turf war, and, 2.) A target of opportunity involving some dispute, domestic or ego-macho confrontation.

The Public whether it is Public Safety, Public Transportation, Public Parks or pot hole free streets and roads is a very low priority. I will also make the point of the amount of trash along our roads that is never picked-up.