Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Democrats Kill Brizzi's Jail Overcrowding Plan

Placing partisan politics ahead of dealing with Marion Co.'s serious jail over-crowding problem, the Democrat majority of the city-county council's Public Safety and Criminal Justice Committee killed Marion Co. Prosecutor Carl Brizzi's plan to alleviate the problem. Specifically, Brizzi sought an appropriation of $1.5 million from the Sheriff's budget for 2006 to fund 220 jail beds at New Castle, which the Indiana Department of Corrections is willing to lease to the county. Council Democrats substituted Brizzi's plan with a meaningless resolution.

Based on the discussion at tonight's meeting, it was clear Democrats were looking for any reason or excuse to kill the proposal simply because it might benefit Brizzi's re-election efforts. Committee Chairwoman Mary Moriarty Adams' strident partisanship and disrespect to Brizzi was a disgrace. City controller Bob Clifford told the committee members there was no money in the budget, and that the city would have to borrow the funds, raise taxes or take the money from other budget items. It's funny that he never seems to have trouble finding money for Mayor Peterson to hand out in the form of corporate welfare everytime one of his business cronies shows up with his hand out. Democrat committee members seemed to pretend the problem had already been dealt with. Their questions to Brizzi were more focused on trying to blame his office for the problem rather than looking for a solution to the problem.

Only one member of the public testified at the hearing. David Certo gave an impassioned plea on behalf of the folks living in Woodruff Place just blocks from the killings last month that left 7 family members dead. He listed any number of things the city seems to find money to spend on that should have a lesser priority than keeping criminals off the street. Council Democrats' reaction was to dispute Certo's premise that either of the men had been released from the jail early due to jail-overcrowding. Brizzi quickly set the record straight that at least one of the men had been released early over the objections of his office.

Where's Sheriff Anderson? He should be at the forefront in trying to solve this problem, but he seems to be missing in action.

8 comments:

Abdul said...

Gary,

I was at the meeting. And you and I agree 100% on this one. Brizzi is coming on the show tomorrow. I've never seen such political shnannigans in my entire life.

Advance Indiana said...

It didn't look pretty on WCTY. I thought I saw you sitting in the front row.

Abdul said...

Melina has a news conference at 11 am this morning with a long-term solution to the jail overcrowding problem. Coincidence? These guys kill me.

Mike said...

Have we heard what the proposal is yet?

Does anyone know if the man listed as a suspect from last night's murder was released early?

Anonymous said...

New Castle? That is no longer a DOC facility. They outsourced the entire prison to GEO, a Florida based company, that (I think) used to be called Wackenhut.

Advance Indiana said...

DOC still owns the facility and decides who is housed there. The county must enter into a memorandum of understanding with DOC to house inmates there.

Anonymous said...

but then DOC turns around and pays GEO for the per diem? why not either put them in a "real" DOC facility, or cut out DOC as a middle man?

Anonymous said...

Drink your Juice, Monroe.

As long as idiotic comments like his, are made, political opponents will atttack. They know no other course of action.

We need the extra jail beds. We have to pay for it. The Council should decide what budget items get cut, dollar-for-dollar, elsewhere in the budget, to match each dollar spent on temporary jail space.

We have Mayors Lugar, Hudnut and Goldsmith to thank for this. Almost 40 years of ignoring the problem, just like the CSO. Problems delayed are problems amplified, and more expensive to fix.

As I recall, council Dmeocrats, in 1989 or 1990, proposed building a whole new jail for $80 million. Seems like a bargain now, doesn't it?