IBJNews

Indiana fair victim testifies on state plan for found money

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

A high school tennis player who was crippled in last summer's deadly stage collapse at the Indiana State Fair testified Thursday as legislators considered whether to double the amount the state is paying for victims.

The Legislature is considering a plan to boost the state's overall payout to fair victims from $5 million to $10 million, using a portion of $320 million in tax revenue that officials late last year found had been collected but not properly deposited in state accounts.

Brad Humphrey, 18, told members of the Senate Appropriations Committee that he was looking forward to his senior season as the No. 1 singles tennis player at Crispus Attucks High School in Indianapolis when he was hurt after strong winds toppled the stage rigging just before an Aug. 13 concert by country duo Sugarland.

Humphrey, who was hospitalized for seven weeks and is now paraplegic, said he faces a lifetime of taking medication and needing a wheelchair-accessible home, vehicle and workplace. He said he's worried even the additional money wouldn't be enough to help all those facing a lifetime of medical bills.

"Not only were lives lost, but other lives have been changed and are measured as in 'before Sugarland' and 'after Sugarland,' " Humphrey said.

Sue Humphrey said her son's medical expenses have already topped $500,000 and that his lifelong medical bills are estimated at more than $5 million, so even if the Legislature doubled the payout, it would fall far short of covering them.

That $5 million amount is what the state has allocated collectively for the families of the seven people killed and dozens hurt in the collapse, due to a law that caps the state's liability.

Besides the additional funding for fair victims, the plan to spend some of the recently discovered money would give $80 million more to school districts toward the cost of full-day kindergarten.

House Ways and Means Chairman Jeff Espich, R-Uniondale, told senators that the plan approved by the House last month would give $400,000 more to survivors of each person killed and provide more money for medical expenses of those injured.

"None of us would suggest that money will make it right, particularly for those families who lost a loved one or for those who suffered lifetime injuries," Espich said.

Tony Patterson, an Indianapolis attorney representing some of the victims, said there are no guarantees of victims getting more money from their lawsuits and that even the additional $5 million in state money wouldn't cover what he estimated at $100 million in damages suffered by the victims.

Senate Appropriations Chairman Luke Kenley, R-Noblesville, said he believed state officials were correct to act quickly to distribute the first $5 million to victims.

"By adding another $5 million, we're doubling what we think is our recognized legal reward," he said. "I think the state's showing a great level of sensitivity and generosity in coming up with that amount."

Kenley said he supported both the extra money for the stage-collapse victims and the $80 million for full-day kindergarten costs, and he expected the committee would advance the plan next week.

Sen. John Broden, D-South Bend, suggested that more money should go toward reinstating public school funding that was cut in recent years. Kenley said the current state budget restores some of that funding and the additional kindergarten funding also would help districts.

State officials late last year discovered $320 million in corporate taxes that had been collected over four years but not transferred to the state's general fund. The remainder of that money will boost the state's bottom line and is expected to kick in an automatic tax refund of about $50 per taxpayer.

ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. Good Day I am Mr (Victoria Wright) from United state of America, i stayed in NEW YORK, and i have a broke up business, until i found this company email who help me to gain a loan for business,, and now i want to used this short medium to congratulate the below company for the fast and safe money they loan to me without any form of collateral, i loan 500,000USD from the company to save my business and lots more, i saw their mail on the internet, everyone always give testimony for what they did, so i quickly contacted them and they all did everything for me without stress and my money was sent to my account just 3 days later, i was surprise and i feel so glad, now i have a standard business control agent who help me, now i will advice those who need urgent loan to contact him at the bellow email:zenithfirm12@gmail.com

  2. NOTICE:This is to inform the general public that Vampires are real. My name is James Franklyn.,am an agent of vampire,am here to introduce our new world trend to you,a world of vampire where life get easier,we have made so many persons vampires and have turned them rich,you will be assured long life and prosperity,you shall be made to be very sensitive to mental alertness,stronger and also very fast,you will not be restricted to walking at night only even at the very middle of broad day light you will be made to walk.In case you are wildly oppressed by some unscrupulous persons we can still help you fight them.Your protection is assured immediately you join.Just contact the bellow email if you are interested we are here to attend to you anytime you want us. Contact the bellow email for more details. Email:vampirescreed@hotmail.com Sincerely: James Franklyn.

  3. Bravo! Someone else that is willing to speak the truth! Bravo!_____NBCSN is available in almost 2 MILLION more homes than just a few years ago, but Indycar STILL gets less total viewers than it did just a few years ago when NBC took over Versus. Attendance and ratings cratered with the end of season races (just when the title battle got "interesting" HAH!__________And now...new race in Basilia, where Miles celebrated the "rich history" of Indycar racing there. Rich history? What, 7 events in the 100 years of AOW? Yep, some history. Well, at least its an oval. It's not??? Are you kidding me??? Gosh darn road racin furriners.

  4. PURITY RAY LOAN OFFER........ Have you been denied by your banks,or are you in need of of an urgent loan to pay of your bills we are capable of giving loans @ cheaper rate to interested individuals, student, companies and members of the public in need of finance to settle bills, we do offer considerable loans which you can count on. For more information on our various types of loan,then you will have to contact PURITY RAY LOAN FIRM, to help you achieve your desire LOAN APPLICATION FORM TO BE FILLED BORROWERS INFORMATION * Full name:………………………. * SEX * ……………………………. * Country………………………….. * State:……………………………. * Land:…………………………….. * Occupation:…………………….. * phone number:…………………. * Telephone: ………………………….. * Age:………………………………. * Amount needed as loan:……… * Loan Duration:………………….. * Propose of Loan:……………….. * Annual revenue:………………… * Monthly Income:……………….. * Guarantee:………………………. * Payment: monthly or annually Email.....purityrayloanfirm@gmail.com Thank you and God bless Mr Purity Ray PURITY RAY LOAN FIRM we tend to serve you better

  5. Problem: most of the people responding to this article don't know about this service AT ALL! Why? Lack of awareness. This isn't IndyGo. This is CIRTA: might as well be the mattress company because they are asleep at the wheel - something like 3 directors over the last year? Playing with federal grant money is great! This "region" wants commuter rail service, has spent MILLIONS on Transportation studies yet can't even support a commuter bus line? This is largely for suburban riders to get to downtown - not for "service people to work in our hotels and restaurants" ! Get your head out of your backside!! These are professionals, students etc. that don't want to fight traffic, save some money on parking, gas, stress.... if CIRTA would put their federal money into widely promoting the sevive to Greenwood, Fishers & Carmel instead of finding directors and studies - this would be a successful service. Our family uses(d) it daily for the last several years - but the recent uncertainty & now unreliability due to cuts from Carmel has been a problem. Now, costs us an additional $350/month for gas & parking ( $4200/year) plus vehicle wear, service, environmental impact ... YES - this REGION needs this this type of service in order to keep growing and getting the people it needs to fill skilled positions in downtown Indianapolis. Think outside of your own car !!!

ADVERTISEMENT