Sunday, July 23, 2006

Library Mess

The Star's Kevin Corcoran lays out an exhaustive investigative piece of the mismanagement by the Indianapolis-Marion Co. Library Board in the construction of a new central library, which is now over $50 million over budget and two years behind schedule. Corcoran spares no one of criticism--there's plenty of blame to share. It raises serious questions about the self-dealing of several board members and the quality of legal services being provided by the Board's law firm, Tabbert, Hahn, Earnest & Weddle. Corcoran's report depicts many bad actors in this sad ordeal and a prevailing culture of "what's in it for me" among the various players.

Corcoran's story is so lengthy that it is actually divided into chapters, something I haven't seen in a Star investigate report, at least recently. If you want to find out why the construction of the new central library has been plagued with so many problems, this report is a must-read. Corcoran and the Star should be applauded for devoting this much news space to this important public project. Let's hope the Mayor and the city-county council (and that includes Republican members) accept responsibility for allowing this problem to get out of hand and take the appropriate steps to ensure better management and oversight over this non-elected Board.

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