IBJNews

Judge to Ballard rep: We decide where courts go

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

Marion Superior judges on Friday gave a grudging endorsement to the former General Motors stamping plant site as the location for a proposed criminal justice complex, but not before sending a message to Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard that where courts are located is their decision.

Ballard senior policy adviser Kurt Fulbeck made a brief presentation to the Marion Superior Executive Committee on Friday during which he asked for the judges’ recommendation of a preferred site. Ballard prefers the GM site, but the city has left open the possibility of a site at Indianapolis International Airport near the Hendricks County line.

“Who do you think makes the ultimate decision on this?” Marion Superior Judge James Osborn asked. Fulbeck responded the City-County Council and project shareholders.

“With regard to where the courts are located,” Osborn said, “that’s our decision. … Nobody gets to tell us where to go.” Osborn said he was reluctant to offer an endorsement because he said he didn’t want to suggest the courts were ceding their authority.

But the executive committee did vote to express a formal preference for the former GM site over the airport. Marion Superior criminal judges earlier this week viewed a presentation on the project but withheld their comments during the public portion of the meeting.

“I think everyone said we don’t want to go to the airport,” Judge John Chavis said of the judges’ views of the two sites.

Executive Committee chairman Judge David Certo emphasized that point as the committee considered its preference: “We’re not interested in pursuing the airport site.”

City officials have made numerous presentations in recent days to neighborhood groups and stakeholders on the proposal. Another public meeting is scheduled for 6 p.m. Monday in the public assembly room of the City-County Building.

The project announced in December is expected to cost as much as $400 million and would consolidate the Marion County jail, Superior Court criminal division, and prosecutor, public defender, probation and other related functions.

This story first appeared in IBJ sister publication The Indiana Lawyer.

ADVERTISEMENT

  • $$$$
    Yeah, sure. Let the judges decide where they think they want to be. And then let them figure out how to build it and pay for it if the Ballard Administration and/or the City County Council decide not to fund it. I don't think the judges have the ultimate authority here, no matter what they think.
  • Judges Do As they please
    Not in favor of a dictator telling the people what is going to happen BUT someone must be the leader and take the steps necessary to get things done. The Mayor is the one that must account for the funds to build what the Judges want. The Judges, for the most part, do as they please any way and complain about the conditions they work in and now complain when someone wants to improve where they work. What difference does it make where the Judges are located when they release the criminals to continue their criminal ways. While the Mayor, Public Safety Director and Chief of Police continue to try to figure out how Indianapolis now has 2 of the top 25 most crime ridden neighborhoods in the country, why not look no further than the Judges that freely release prisoners without rhyme or reason. Law enforcement catch and Judges release, citizens pay !
  • Not so simple
    It's not as simple as you all are suggesting. The relevant statute does appear to give the Marion Superior Courts power to decide where in the county they will hear cases outside the City-County Building. But that power is conferred by statute, so it seems the GA could take it away.
  • Wrong Indyman
    couldn't be more wrong Indyman...thank heavens there is a branch you can appeal to when the delusional executive and legislative branches think they can do whatever bidding their political contributors demand of them...it is the last refuge and I am glad the Judge reminded the Chief Executive (if anyone, he is the dictator, not the Judge) and put others on notice of the constitutional requirement to properly provide for the system of courts, which are the last refuge for those who have been wronged (unfortunately, they are also a refuge for a lot of folks seeking a payday, etc, but with the good comes the bad). Let's see you get accused of a crime Indyman...bet you want your day in court then...
  • Wrong
    No fan of Ballard, but the judges cannot be more wrong. Judges are slaves to the legislators. Judges do not set policy. Judges go where legislators tell them. Judges aren't allowed to write their own checks or sign their own leases. Judges aren't allowed to levy and collect their own taxes, so they're bound to accept whatever the rest of the government hands them.
  • Judges
    The Mayor has no authority over the judges who are separately elected. He has no authority to tell them where their courtroom will be. As far as the suggestion of "light rail" to either the airport location or the GM stamping plant, that's not an option. Light rail is extremely expensive and Indianapolis does not have the density for it. The legislature rejected light rail for the NE corridor of the city and that's one place where there is some (but not enough) density.
  • The Judges Are The Ultimate Authority On The Courts
    Indyman, your personal beliefs aside, the law gives the judges the sole authority to decide where their courts are located. And if you disagree, you can, oh yes, appeal to the courts---good luck with that. The judge is simply stating a truth.
  • Transportation
    Since I don't think any law firms will leave their downtown offices and many private citizens need to visit the judicial offices, there will need to be some type of mass transit build to support a new location. Not broken down bus system we have. Extending a light rail system to the GM site is a lot less costly than to the airport location.
  • Its unfortunate the judges think they are the ultimate authority. I guess they forget who they work for. Talk about dictators. It might be good to shake them up with a little voter revolt.
    • It's About Time
      FINALLY!! Someone with proper authority reminds Mayor Marine that he is an elected official, not a dictator.... I think the GM site will work great for this, and it won't prohibit other development there....

    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. I had read earlier this spring that Noodles & Co was going to open in the Fishers Marketplace (which is SR 37 and 131st St, not 141st St, just FYI). Any word on that? Also, do you happen to know what is being built in Carmel at Pennsylvania and Old Meridian? May just be an office building but I'm not sure.

    2. I'm sorry, but you are flat out wrong. There are few tracks in the world with the history of IMS and probably NO OTHER as widely known and recognized. I don't care what you think about the stat of Indy Car racing, these are pretty hard things to dispute.

    3. Also wondering if there is an update on the Brockway Pub-Danny Boy restaurant/taproom that was planned for the village as well?

    4. Why does the majority get to trample on the rights of the minority? You do realize that banning gay marriage does not rid the world of gay people, right? They are still going to be around and they are still going to continue to exist. The best way to get it all out of the spotlight? LEGALIZE IT! If gay marriage is legal, they will get to stop trying to push for it and you will get to stop seeing it all over the news. Why do Christians get to decide what is moral?? Why do you get to push your religion on others? How would legalizing gay marriage expose their lifestyle to your children? By the way, their lifestyle is going to continue whether gay marriage is legalized or not. It's been legal in Canada for quite a while now and they seem to be doing just fine. What about actual rules handed down by God? What about not working on Sundays? What about obeying your parents? What about adultery? These are in the 10 Commandments, the most important of God's rules. Yet they are all perfectly legal. What about divorce? Only God is allowed to dissolve a marriage so why don't you work hard to get divorce banned? Why do you get to pick and choose the parts of the Bible you care about?

    5. Look at the bright side. With the new Lowe's call center, that means 1000 jobs at $10 bucks an hour. IMS has to be drooling over all that disposable income. If those employees can save all their extra money after bills, in five years they can go to the race LIVE. Can you say attendance boost?

    ADVERTISEMENT