Take from poor (relief), give to CIB

April 21, 2009
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dropThat drip-drop sound you hear is not the rain outside. It’s coming from the irony dripping off the most recent Capital Improvement Board bailout proposal.

A bi-partisan group of Marion County lawmakers is suggesting that the CIB budgetary shortfall be filled (at least in the near term) with reserves built up in township trustees’ coffers. Isn’t that money—at least in part—intended for poor relief? And fire protection too.

The irony in a suggestion that lawmakers take money that was taxed out of people’s pockets in the name of helping those less fortunate and turning it over to the Capital Improvement Board, which owns sports venues predominantly filled on a regular basis by the more fortunate among us, is pretty interesting to say the least.

Not surprisingly, the proposal forwarded yesterday by Reps. Ed DeLaney, Mary Ann Sullivan, John Barnes and Jeb Bardon, all Indianapolis Democrats, and Rep. Phil Hinkle, R-Indianapolis, isn’t gaining much support from township trustees or state lawmakers. No comment yet from the representatives of Robin Hood.
  • This is beautiful!!! Actually, not a bad idea. Bringing truth in advertising to Corporate Wellfare!
  • Here's a little perspective. What do we get for $470 million?

    ($47 million annual tax increase for at least 10 years)

    Maybe keep the Colts and Pacers in the city with no additional investment from them at all.

    What did Michigan get for approximately $470 million of tax credits?

    $2 Billion of private capital investment and 7,700 jobs from four Advanced Battery Manufacturers.

    Who do you think is smarter?

  • I would agree with you, Anthony, if those stockpiled funds went for poor relief. We know that Center Township hoards cash and real estate in lieu of poor relief based on the outstanding reporting of the IBJ. The Wayne Township Trustee refuses to go along with a merger into IFD that would reduce property tax rates there for fire services. Instead, he's demanding higher property taxes and, if he doesn't get it, he's going to tap those reserves. I'd like to put pressure on all of these townships to consolidate. What the three lawmakers are proposing as I understand it is a pledge of those funds to cover short-term debt until a permanent solution is found.
  • It's pretty telling that Wash. Township Trustee Frank Short says, I'm not interested in giving them any of my money. I beg your pardon? Whose money is it?
  • Really a bad headline. Sure it turns heads, but it is not the truth. That said, I would rather the money come from already hoarded and taxed money sitting in township coffers doing no one any good then to have it come from new taxes and still have the township money sitting in a bank doing no good.
  • Congrats Indyman, you've just been sold a very nice bill of goods. How about we fix the system of this state's trustees, use the money for what it was intended, which is in fact poor relief, and find another way to bailout the Simons and pay for LOS operations. Novel idea, huh?
  • Well it seems the poor are being taken care of, and we still have stockpiles of cash, cars and real estate sitting in the portfolios of the trustees. As the IBJ has shown there are more than enough reasons to eliminate the trustee and replace them with a combination of County level offices and private charities. If a charity came to me asking for money and said their overhead was 60%, I would laugh in their faces, but that is what rate some of our trustees are collecting.

    All the trustee level does is pad their income, build political empires (the Carsons for one) and allow them to payoff political patronage positions. Boss Tweed would be proud.

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  1. I took Bruce's comments to highlight a glaring issue when it comes to a state's image, and therefore its overall branding. An example is Michigan vs. Indiana. Michigan has done an excellent job of following through on its branding strategy around "Pure Michigan", even down to the detail of the rest stops. Since a state's branding is often targeted to visitors, it makes sense that rest stops, being that point of first impression, should be significant. It is clear that Indiana doesn't care as much about the impression it gives visitors even though our branding as the Crossroads of America does place importance on travel. Bruce's point is quite logical and accurate.

  2. I appreciated the article. I guess I have become so accustomed to making my "pit stops" at places where I can ALSO get gasoline and something hot to eat, that I hardly even notice public rest stops anymore. That said, I do concur with the rationale that our rest stops (if we are to have them at all) can and should be both fiscally-responsible AND designed to make a positive impression about our state.

  3. I don't know about the rest of you but I only stop at these places for one reason, and it's not to picnic. I move trucks for dealers and have been to rest areas in most all 48 lower states. Some of ours need upgrading no doubt. Many states rest areas are much worse than ours. In the rest area on I-70 just past Richmond truckers have to hike about a quarter of a mile. When I stop I;m generally in a bit of a hurry. Convenience,not beauty, is a primary concern.

  4. Community Hospital is the only system to not have layoffs? That is not true. Because I was one of the people who was laid off from East. And all of the LPN's have been laid off. Just because their layoffs were not announced or done all together does not mean people did not lose their jobs. They cherry-picked people from departments one by one. But you add them all up and it's several hundred. And East has had a dramatic drop I in patient beds from 800 to around 125. I know because I worked there for 30 years.

  5. I have obtained my 6 gallon badge for my donation of A Positive blood. I'm sorry to hear that my donation was nothing but a profit center for the Indiana Blood Center.