Autos Blog Posts

The root of Indiana's myriad problems

November 22, 2010
Comments(37)
Longtime economist Morton Marcus says the objective truth is that Indiana is in decline. He also insists the solution is a change in the culture, not just job creation.
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Indiana bombs in rankings of 'new economy' states

August 25, 2010
Comments(8)
State has a dire future if Business Facilities' latest lists are any indication.
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Hyundai hole in Indiana

August 9, 2010
Comments(4)
The rising Korean industrial giant is building another plant in the U.S., but not in Indiana.
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Is alternative energy sustainable in Indiana?

July 7, 2010
Comments(4)
An economic development observer questions what will happen after the feds turn off the tap.
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Downstream problems with professionals

June 2, 2010
Comments(7)
Should engineers be required to spend time in repair shops, and architects with the lunch bucket crowd?
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Time to bring I-69 downtown?

May 28, 2010
Comments(43)
Dusting off the original plans to extend the highway from I-465 to downtown would ease congestion. But, oh, the downsides.
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Shaking up the Indy 500

May 26, 2010
Comments(5)
Looser restrictions, and the potential for more innovation, could bring back some of the old luster.
 
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Carbon Motors, the anti carmaker

April 6, 2010
Comments(3)
The upstart cop car manufacturer is doing lots of things differently, including the way they track your car.
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Will easy commutes linger?

January 29, 2010
Comments(3)
Traffic counts are rising, but the jobless are still at home.
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Falcone mourning Saab

December 18, 2009
Comments(4)
Former dealer saw the end coming, but says customers are following him to Volkswagen and Subaru.
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Even Bentley sales are down

December 16, 2009
Comment(1)
A Zionsville dealer says the economy is influencing its wealthy buyers, but things would be worse under Rolls-Royce.
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Don't confuse Toyota for GM

November 25, 2009
Comment(1)
Toyota isn't about to grow complacent like GM did in the '60s, an analyst says.
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Saturn's loss, Byrider's gain

November 3, 2009
Comments(2)
J.D. Byrider, the Indianapolis chain of used-car lots, is courting Saturn dealers to come into the fold as Byrider franchisees.
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Chrysler sticks it to Kokomo

August 21, 2009
Comments(0)

Officials in Kokomo and Howard County are in a tough spot. The “new” Chrysler created after its bankruptcy sale to Fiat contends it‘s no longer on the hook for $12.9 million it owes various local taxing bodies this year and $12.3 million it will owe next year.

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Questions about â??clunkersâ??

August 6, 2009
Comments(11)
â??Cash for clunkersâ?? has sent lots of gas-guzzlers to the scrap yard and helped car dealers move the metal. But as Congress considers adding $2 billion to the initial $1 billion earmarked for the program, both the political right and left...
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GM's looming bankruptcy

May 29, 2009
Comments(4)
So, three decades of decline has come to this for General Motors: a Chapter 11 bankruptcy petition expected to be filed Monday. Lots of problems contributed to its downfall, but now the carmaker faces an extremely steep climb. The bankruptcy...
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Return of the gas-guzzler?

April 29, 2009
Comments(7)
Americans are gravitating toward the kinds of vehicles theyâ??ll be buying for the next several years, says one of the nationâ??s leading automotive forecasters. John Wolkonowicz, senior auto analyst at IHS Global Insight, says the dominant vehicle of the future will...
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Mass transit potential

April 27, 2009
Comments(13)
For an interesting take on how mass transit could help revitalize Indianapolis, see IBJ reporter Chris Oâ??Malleyâ??s story this week on the topic. Ball State grad students dreamed up several concepts for plunking new rail stations along existing...
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Tax commuters for marketing?

February 24, 2009
Comments(14)
How do you feel about taxing commuters to supplement promotion of the cityâ??s convention industry? The idea was floated in an article by IBJ reporter Anthony Schoettle about the Indianapolis Convention & Visitors Association asking for more money...
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Can Saturn be saved?

February 18, 2009
Comments(9)
As just about everyone expected, General Motors and Chrysler are back asking for more bailouts. Instead of $17.4 billion, they now want $39 billion. As part of its turnaround plan, GM plans to jettison Saturn, the brand launched in...
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Private attention to mass transit

January 29, 2009
Comment(1)
For another example of why Indianapolis works better than a lot of other places, read IBJ reporter Chris Oâ??Malleyâ??s story about yet another look at mass transit in central Indiana. Mass transit has been studied to death even as...
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Can anyone drive in this stuff?

January 28, 2009
Comments(15)
Thereâ??s nothing like a good snow storm to bring out the spectrum of driver skills. In the past couple of days and now today, youâ??ve probably seen it all, too. Creepers. Speeders. Lane-straddlers. Rubberneckers who nearly cause their own spin-offs. Should more...
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The future for diesel cars

January 19, 2009
Comments(3)
A number of car companies have introduced, or plan to introduce, clean-diesel engines to cater to buyers wanting better fuel efficiency. Diesels from Volkswagen and other manufacturers boost mileage by about a third, but much of that advantage in the past...
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Questions about Detroit's bench

December 8, 2008
Comments(7)
Politicians are about to step in for directors and force sweeping changes on the Detroit car companies, judging from the direction of talks in Congress. Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd yesterday called for the firing of General Motors...
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Gall about the jobs bank

December 4, 2008
Comments(6)
The jobs bank has come to symbolize whatever the general public thinks is wrong with the United Auto Workers and Detroit car companies. For many years, the UAW contract has stipulated that laid-off workers be paid nearly their entire compensation. Now,...
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  1. By Mr. Lee's own admission, he basically ran pro-bono ads on the billboard. Paying advertisers didn't want ads on a controversial, ugly billboard that turned off customers. At least one of Mr. Lee's free advertisers dropped out early because they found that Mr. Lee's advertising was having negative impact. So Mr. Lee is disingenous to say the city now owes him for lost revenue. Mr. Lee quickly realized his monstrosity had a dim future and is trying to get the city to bail him out. And that's why the billboard came down so quickly.

  2. Merchants Square is back. The small strip center to the south of 116th is 100% leased, McAlister’s is doing well in the outlot building. The former O’Charleys is leased but is going through permitting with the State and the town of Carmel. Mac Grill is closing all of their Indy locations (not just Merchants) and this will allow for a new restaurant concept to backfill both of their locations. As for the north side of 116th a new dinner movie theater and brewery is under construction to fill most of the vacancy left by Hobby Lobby and Old Navy.

  3. Yes it does have an ethics commission which enforce the law which prohibits 12 specific items. google it

  4. Thanks for reading and replying. If you want to see the differentiation for research, speaking and consulting, check out the spreadsheet I linked to at the bottom of the post; it is broken out exactly that way. I can only include so much detail in a blog post before it becomes something other than a blog post.

  5. 1. There is no allegation of corruption, Marty, to imply otherwise if false. 2. Is the "State Rule" a law? I suspect not. 3. Is Mr. Woodruff obligated via an employment agreement (contractual obligation) to not work with the engineering firm? 4. In many states a right to earn a living will trump non-competes and other contractual obligations, does Mr. Woodruff's personal right to earn a living trump any contractual obligations that might or might not be out there. 5. Lawyers in state government routinely go work for law firms they were formally working with in their regulatory actions. You can see a steady stream to firms like B&D from state government. It would be interesting for IBJ to do a review of current lawyers and find out how their past decisions affected the law firms clients. Since there is a buffer between regulated company and the regulator working for a law firm technically is not in violation of ethics but you have to wonder if decisions were made in favor of certain firms and quid pro quo jobs resulted. Start with the DOI in this review. Very interesting.

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