Time for Ballard to face storm

January 28, 2009
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BallardUntil now, Mayor Greg Ballard hasn’t weighed in on the topic of financially assisting the Indiana Pacers. When last asked by the IBJ in late December, Ballard offered the following response.

“[The Pacers] haven’t approached me about that yet,” Ballard said. “I mean, I’m hearing rumblings about that, but they haven’t formally approached me about that. I think you probably know that would fall more directly into the purview of the [Capital Improvement Board]. So we’ll have to see how that plays out in the future.”

The CIB announced yesterday a plan to pay $15 million in expenses at Conseco Fieldhouse in 2010.

You don’t have to be an economist or sports business expert to know the Blue and Gold are bleeding red—and have been for a while.

“I think they’re losing a little bit of money each year,” Ballard told IBJ in December. “I think that’s what’s happening. I haven’t seen the numbers. [CIB member] Pat [Early] has indicated to me that they may be in some difficulty. Obviously, until the CIB comes to me and talks, it’s their business. That’s what we put the board in there for. That’s why they’re there.”

The mayor, who appoints six of nine CIB members, went on to explain to IBJ last month that he’s not a “micromanager by nature.”

Local taxpayers most likely will be expecting Mayor Ballard to give them his vision for how he intends to steer us through this storm. After all, it’s the mayor taxpayers elect, not the CIB.
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  • First, let me be clear that i am a fan of the Pacers and appreciate what the Simons have done to keep the team in Indianapolis. However, this equation is out of balance. The taxpayers are expected to take on more expenses of Conseco just because the Pacers are not making money - which is primarily the result of lower attendance which in turn is the result of management decisions. Taxpayers had nothing to do with the issues that plague the Pacers. If the taxpayers are expected to cover the losses caused by bad management then they should share in the profits when times are good. I have always been a fan of the Green Bay model where the taxpayers own a piece of the team - that is the way it should be if they are on the hook for losses. I know this is not likely but i felt it needed to be said. Thanks for the opportunity to do so.
  • This should be good. Ballard was on TV @ noon saying he thought the city was doing fine about the snow removal. :lol:

    He hasn't a clue what's going on. AS - You might as well just call Bob Grand over at Barnes & Thornburg - he's running the city.
  • Time to go back to the Colts and renegotiate.

    Pacer renegotiation is dead on arrival.

    Keep in mind both the Pacers and Colts were given non-Pacer and non-Colt revenues at Conseco and Lucas Oil to get the city out of the business of government bail outs and massive tax subsidies.

    If they cant make money maybe they shouldn't pay players and management so much.
  • CIB Bankrupt: Grand Wont Ask Colts to Shoulder More Burden and Early Wants To Give Pacers More

    http://advanceindiana.blogspot.com/2009/01/cib-bankrupt-grand-wont-ask-colts-to.html
  • “I think they’re losing a little bit of money each year,” Ballard told IBJ in December.
    Huh? You've got to be joking. The Pacers are losing more than a little bit. Part of this has to do with poor team management and a string of bad decisions (many made by the man now managing the NY Knicks), but not all of it. Ballard wanted the job as mayor, so now it's time for him to stand and deliver. And no more of this waiting to see what the CIB does or says. The voters didn't vote for Bob Grand, the voted for Ballard. Time to get it done mayor.
  • Let's see the Simon's have billions.

    The city is scraping for pennies.

    You do the math.
  • Does anyone not remember the early 80's? The Simons saved the Pacers. Would the Colts exist, would the nice downtown exist if they had not stepped up? Remember when the finals were in Conseco and those without tickets watched the game on giant screens across the street.

    Yes, times are bad, and yes the city needs to be frugal and diligent with the money, but any sports team belongs to the city as well as the owners. Check out all the Colt and Pacer shirts worn throughout the city. The pride brought to the fans when the team wins. The community service given back by the players. This counts for something.

    All I know is that we have a vibrant downtown that does not exist in any other comparable city. Conseco with the Pacers, the Big Ten tournament etc, is a vital part of that foundation.

    I'm not saying giveaway the bank, I'm saying crack it open a bit. Let's not be penny savy and dollar foolish.
  • Sometimes I wonder if Schoettle works for the IBJ or Irsay Inc. He always conveniently looks the other way when the Colts are making negative headlines.

    If this blog was truly sports business, we'd hear about the $20MM from the Colts side or the 25+ Colts employees (including Lamey) laid off for financial reasons even though every NFL teams makes a profit every year, or the drastic differences between the Pacers/Colts deals w/ CIB. Even IndyStar reports that.

    I appreciate someone in this town reporting stuff like this. I just wish it were a bit more balanced w/ a lot more actual reporting. I do have to give him credit -- he allows us to post our unedited feelings, which no one else does.
  • With the multi-million dollar property give-away where the Simons built their headquarters and the sweet deal they have renting out Conseco Fieldhouse I'd say the Simons are still ahead in the game. The candidate that they supported won the Presidency so they should just sit back and relax knowing that everything is going to be hunky dory in short order.
  • Beyond provincial justifications one way or the other, the NBA's prolific salary structure makes this entertainment product a diminishing investment. Value-added 'collateral' revenue generation for hotel, restaurant and retail has pretty much peeked. Decisions needs to be weighed in light of the economy. Are financial 'grafts' from already bleeding segments, public and private, the way to go? Most of us do not 'need' to watch the NBA or the NFL in person. We all 'need' to eat, breathe, have transportation, a place to call home with some sort of income. As for 'sophistication charts'-we're probably somewhere in the 25-40 range. As for financial vulnerability-Indianapolis, downtown in particular, is in the 'top-ten'. That's one list you do not want to rate highly on. Phoenix, LA, Miami and Vegas will always have better weather. New York and Chicago are multi-faceted behemoths that will survive. Everyone would have been better off if successive city leaders treated this place like Portland or Des Moines, focusing on 'real' improvements and allowing the course of commerce to develop, keeping taxes down, transportation and housing up.
  • NBA sucks....too many teams, too many games in the regular season and nothing but slam dunking.

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  2. to be the big fish in the little pond of IRL midwest racin' when yer up against Racin' Gardner

  3. In the first sentance "As a resident of one of these new Carmel Apartments the issue the local governments need to discuss are build quality & price." need a way to edit

  4. As a resident of one of these new Carmel Apartments the issue the local governments need to discuss is build quality & price. First none of these places is worth $1100 for a one bedroom. Downtown Carmel or Keystone at the Crossing in Indy. It doesn't matter. All require you to get in your car to get just about anywhere you need to go. I'm in one of the Carmel apartments now where after just 2.5 short years one of the kitchen cabinet doors is crooked and lawn and property maintenance seems to be lacking my old Indianapolis apartment which cost $300 less. This is one of the new star apartments. As they keep building throughout the area "deals" will start popping up creating shoppers. If your property is falling apart after year 3 what will it look like after year 5 or 10??? Why would one stay here if they could move to a new Broad Ripple in 2 to 3 years or another part of the Far Northside?? The complexes aren't going to let the "poor" move in without local permission so that's not that problem, but it the occupancy rate drops suddenly because the "Young" people moved back to Indy then look out.

  5. Why are you so concerned about Ace hardware? I don't understand why anyone goes there! Every time ive gone in the past, they don't have what I need and I end up going to the big box stores. I understand the service aspect and that they try to be helpful but if they are going to survive I think they might need to carry more specialty parts.

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