Is Jones a political football?

November 26, 2007
Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share
Carmel tech entrepreneur Scott Jones is finding himself in the middle of a political debate he didnâ??t ask for and doesnâ??t want.

The spokeswoman for the Indiana Democratic Party is questioning whether Jones needed the $4 million in grants that two of his businesses received this fall from the state 21st Century Research & Technology Fund.

As IBJ reporter Peter Schnitzler wrote in this weekendâ??s paper, the spokeswoman, Jennifer Wagner, also is asking if Jones received the grants in exchange for his support of Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels. Jones, youâ??ll remember, hosted a fund-raiser at his mansion in October that generated more than $1 million for Danielsâ?? re-election war chest.

Jones calls the insinuation of quid pro quo â??ridiculous,â?? saying Wagner might just as well have asked if he has beaten his wife lately. And the Indiana Economic Development Corp., which oversees the 21st Century Fund, insists plenty of reviews and firewalls are in place to ensure the grants go only to deserving companies.

All of this raises plenty of points. Hereâ??s one: Given his ties to Daniels, should Jones have been treated differently than other entrepreneurs who apply for the grants?
ADVERTISEMENT
  • One has to ask how someone could develop what could be considered a low class search engine and receive such a huge grant from the state. Everyone should take a look at chacha.com and decide for themselves if this site does even one tenth of what Google does. I don't think it comes close. Did Jones rush to get something on the street just to get in line for the funds? There are plenty of local software development firms that could have used even a tenth of that money.
  • Jones is smart enough to know that this looks a little fishy. Perhaps he shouldn't have been so vocal about the recent Fundraiser, knowing that the application for a Grant was pending. How is this so different from a bid for a State contract being granted right after a highly touted Fundraiser? Given the Governor's constant harping on the questionale ethics of the previous Administration, I'd say this at least appears to rise to the level of hypocrisy. Scott & The Gov. should not be surprised by any fuss.
  • I've had frequent contact with the people who administer the 21st Century fund. The process is rigorous (there are outside reviewers of proposals) and the integrity of the individuals involved is unimpeachable. I honestly believe that this process cannot be gamed.
  • Favors abound in the world of big dollars. Anything can be made to look transparent if you throw money at the right people. Take it from an average Joe... one of the have-nots if you will, that money always seems to stay in the same circles, the same people and their buddies and famiiles always have it and throw it around like it's candy. Is even more sad of a remark about our society when there are thousands of people even right here in Indy, who might be able to live a comfortable life on just 1/10 of the money these big boys throw around and would call chump change. :(
  • Let me see if I have this correct? How many millions for a search engine that claims its differentiator is people doing the search. I have been rejected twice by the 21 fund and they always say our technology is not world changing and revolutionary. It is certainly much more advanced, scalable and world changing than a business model built around people as its differentiator.

    It certainly begs the question in my mind how someone could receive $2 million for something like Cha Cha (which I have no issues with the business model) and I got rejected twice. We have revenues, big customers, 50 high average wage people, profiability and are proven and want to use technology to drive future scalability.

    When comparing our rejections and comments back to what others have done it is very clear there are outside factors. I know what they are in my case. I have no idea what they are in this case.
  • The more questionable of the two grants would be the $2 million to a company that is developing a robotic lawn mower for golf courses. Doesn't seem likely that company is likely to add much to the Indiana economy. Perhaps it would be interesting to see how much of Scott's own funds have been invested in either of these two companies. It would also be interesting to see where his $150 million in personal wealth is invested--can it be a conjecture as to what he feels the street value is of ChaCha and Precise Path? Also--can he point to what 'successful' businesses he has personally developed, or is this also just 'his' valuation? The fact that the fund --of which he was once a board member--has invested 10% of its total investments with his companies makes it appear less than 'arms' length'. The point of the fund was to spread this around to many small entrepreneurs and not just to a handful of well-connected individuals. Thanks to all for calling attention to this issue--perhaps we will see an answer that has not been vetted by the 'public relations' team surrounding Jones.
  • It will be interesting to see how long this human assisted search engine will last when all of these human assistants get their 1099 after the first year.
  • Politics as usual folks. Have fun Scott. :) Best call them lawyers.

    Oh - and Ballard is not part of the Republican machine either? :lol: Well, he is NOW!

Post a comment to this blog

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
  1. Hello Dear Are you tired of Seeking Loans and Mortgages,have you Been Turned down constantly By your banks and Other Financial Institutions or Micro Finance scheme. This is let you know with 100% guarantee that we Offer loans ranging from $1,000 Minimum to $1,000,000.00 Maximum at 3% interest rate per Month. We give out LOANS for developing business. a competitive edge/business expansion. email address: michealscottloan124@gmail.com We offer the following kinds of loans and many more; * Personal Loans ( Unsecured Loan) * Business Loans ( Unsecured Loan) * Consolidation Loan * Combination Loan * Home Improvement * Xmas Loans for contact to seek for loan email this email address: michealscottloan124@gmail.com Thanks

  2. My name is Mr Henry Josh and i live in the USA California and life is worth living right now for me and my family and all this is because of one man sent by GOD to help me and my family, i once had a life filled with sorrow because my first SON needed a kidney transplant and all our savings were going towards his medications and this normally leaves us with no money to pay our bills or even put enough food on our table and our rent was due and no funds to pay these bills and life felt so unfair to me and every night my wife will cry herself to sleep every night until one day, i was browsing through yahoo answers and i saw a striking advert of a man that gives out personal loans and that the offer is opened to all and i have heard so many things about internet scams but at this point of my life, i was very desperate and ready to take any risk and at the end of the day, i applied for this loan and from one step to another, i got my loan within 12 hours through bank transfer and you know, it was all like a dream and i called Mr Daniel Jones A Man who is the GOD sent lender i found and said, i have received my loan and he smiled stating that to GOD be the glory and i was so shocked as i have never ever seen anyone with such a GOD fearing and kind heart and today, i am the happiest man on earth because by GOD’S grace, my SON kidney transplant was successful and today he is healthy, i and my family are living very comfortable and happy and if you are in my former situation or in serious and legitimate need of a loan, you can reach this GOD sent lender via fidelityloanfirm@outlook.com

  3. Greetings to everyone reading this comment!!! I am Greg William by name. I am out here to recommend the effort of Mark Oscar,I was in need of a consolidation loan amount of 50,000 and as soon as I got in contact with Mark Oscar Loan Firm on Wednesday last week and on Friday last week as well I receive an alert from my bank(Royal Bank of Scotland Group) that the fund was transferred,I want everybody on this site to contact Mark Oscar now via email on how to get a loan because I got my loan from them and I am very happy,so contact them now. Oscarloanfinance@hotmail.com Thanks!!!!!!

  4. Elected officials, like Mourdock, get vested in 8 years. It takes 10 years for all other public employees, most of whom make a lot less money. So much for the promise to finish out his term.

  5. Great state treasurer and a good man!! Just curious if the folks who didn't quite understand his quote would like to tell my daughter-in-law that God didn't intend her! Mourdock's comment was correct but twisted and the article didn't mention that his opponent and the press let the impression stand that Mourdock meant that the rape was intended. Stupid people!!

ADVERTISEMENT