Thursday, October 04, 2007

Mayoral Candidates Face Off

The candidates for Indianapolis mayor faced off tonight for the first public debate. Unfortunately, I had another obligation and was unable to watch it. Ruth Holladay did catch it, and she has some strong opinions about the candidates. Although she voted for Peterson in his first two races, she thought he "came across as just a little too slick, to the point of oiliness." She also didn't think much of Peterson's suggestion the state surplus be tapped to help with Indianapolis' property tax woes. "For Peterson to suggest that Indianapolis should pay down its property tax bills with state money is short-sighted at best," she writes.

On Republican Greg Ballard, Holladay gives us that he isn't as polished as Peterson. "The fact that he does not have the mayor's polish in public speaking did not hurt his credibility," she opines. "He's the former Marine officer, law and order candidate; he comes across as serious and earnest about dealing with a central fact of life in Indy -- that violent crime is up."

On Libertarian Fred Peterson, Holladay writes, "He's got some great ideas, like all Libertarians, but the notion that the city needs sidewalks more than the Colts complex is a throwback."

So what you did you about tonight's debate?

UPDATE:

The Star's Mary Beth Schneider has her take on last night's debate here. A key statement from Ballard she quotes: “You need to ask yourself: Are you better off than you were? Do you feel safer? Do you feel safer in your homes? Is the government representing you? Do you feel they are taxing you appropriately?” Bart responds: “I will pledge to cut non-public-safety budget by 10 percent within three years, or I will not run for re-election.” Fact checking my Marion Co. GOP Chairman Tom John points out: "Under 8 years of Bart Peterson, the Indianapolis Budget has increased over $300 million."

Star political columnist Matt Tully's analysis is here. On Ballard: "He doesn't take advantage of his first prime-time opportunity, failing to deliver the kind of memorable zingers you expect from a little-known challenger." On Peterson: "Mayor Peterson delivers his best line of the evening when asked about the need for a new criminal justice complex." "There are a lot of higher priorities I have than an office building," he said.

21 comments:

Anonymous said...

I thought all 3 didn't do very well.

And for the con spiracy theorists who thought Shella was a Bart backer...you couldn't tell.

I think there are four more public appearances/debates planned...the next Oct. 17 on WRTV.

On the bright side, all 3 were civil. How refreshing that was.

Mike Bowman said...

On the topic of property taxes I love how Bart said the first thing that needed to be done was cut spending - but the first thing he did was RAISE taxes this summer before even considering any budget cuts.

Ballard was rough and not polished - but this was his first time on Live TV in a debate.

Asked about what to do with the old Market Square site Ballard suggest a new criminal courts build. Fred Peterson wants it as a green space - not a building with a 10 year tax abatement. Bart Peterson wants a high rise condominium / building that would bring revenue in to help lower property taxes for others and adds to the tax base and does not take away from tax payers. He did not mention wether this building would get a tax abatement.


On the question of Do we need a new courts building ( wether on the old Market square arena site or somewhere else ) Ballard suggest a new court / jail go there is a good idea. Peterson suggest that it is a low priority and he has higher priorities than another office building ( Yet he wants a condo building at that site ? ).

On the question of Mass Transit - Bart Peterson says it is a low priority - just keep studying it. He also wants to expand Indygo across the nine counties. BAllard also suggest a better Indygo to allow Indy workers to get to work.

On the question to the mayor why the mayor gave up direct control of the police force - Peterson said if they were going to merge both forces it was either going to be the mayor or sheriff who ran it. He said the sheriff is an elected official. He said since the Sherriff controlled 70-75 of hte land area and population he should run it. He said he is control of the budgets of the both the sheriff and IMPD. ( But the mayor is elected also if that is a determining factor ). Ballard said people elect the mayor to take care of public safety and Peterson gave up that control.

No one hit a home run. Peterson was not very convincing and Ballard has room to improve his TV presence.

Wilson46201 said...

Ballard lost. It's not that he did so badly but he wasnt the definitive winner of the debate which is what his faltering campaign desperately needed. Tully and Abdul[!] felt Mayor Bart "won". When even Mike Bowman couldn't declare Ballard the overwhelming victor you know the Ballard campaign is still stuck in the doldrums, swirling down the tubes...

tonya beeler said...

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I'm pretty sure it was Ballard that said he would not run for re-election unless he cut the non-public-safety by 10%.

Sir Hailstone said...

It was Ballard that said if he could not cut the budget 10% he'd not run for re-election.

Tully is a tool. Shella is a tool also only station management had him put away. He admitted Wednesday night he thought Fred Peterson didn't deserve a spot in the debates.

Mayor Bart might be a smooth talker but he comes across like Joe Isuzu. I kept expecting the words "He's lying" come across the screen.

Anonymous said...

As one who lives on the eastside, I am very concerned about Ballard's idea of putting a courts facility on the Market Square site. Whatever goes there needs to draw people to live, work and play on the eastside.

Shortsightedness was already displayed with the placement of the interstate that acts as a barrier between downtown and the near eastside. Don't compound the error.

Sir Hailstone said...

"Whatever goes there needs to draw people to live, work and play on the eastside."

Who wants to live next door to the CCB and the jail?

Go one or two blocks east and you will find residential areas. 225 N. New Jersey, Hudson, and a few others.

Four, or is it five now, attempts were attempted to put condoes on the old MSA site. It didn't work. The CCB is filled to the gills and the county is paying rent in other buildings for county agencies.

Besides the CCB court security requirements run counter to Indiana's open meetings laws which are held in the same building.

Not quite on this topic does anyone know the timetable for moving the interstate exit from Market Street to Washington St?

Anonymous said...

Damn the apocolypse is here. I agree with Hail

There have been multiple failed attempts to develop the Market Sq. site, mmost with close ties to the Peterson camp. They have failed miserably--even leading to lawsuits over allegedly unpaid professional fees.

There is ample residential development within a block or two of Market Square. There will be more. Downtown does need some more retail apart from Circle Centre, but it'll come.

What we need is a secure courts building. What we have now is a tragedy waiting to happen.

And hellllll-o Mike Bowman, but if you think this mayor and council ahve not cut the budget you've bene living udner a rock. Multiple line item cuts have been enacted for three years. The voerall budget is up becasue public safety costs are up.

But other items hahve been diminished. Ch. 16's painful-to-watch Administration Committee meetings over the last three summers come to mind immediately.

There are more cuts coming.

You can have your own opinion, but you can't have your own facts.

Anonymous said...

Sir Hailstone, go to URBANOPHILE'S blog off Gary's link. I think he has the skinny on that roadwork.

armed right wing citizen said...

"if you think this mayor and council ahve not cut the budget you've bene living udner a rock. Multiple line item cuts have been enacted for three years. The voerall budget is up becasue public safety costs are up"

No its actually over 50 million in "other fees and services" line item.

And why are public safety costs up? I can think of about $150K per year off the top of my head - Vern Brown and Monroe Gray. Then there's the payoff to Steve Talley as an "assistant deputy Emergency Management" whatever. Then the deputy mayors in charge of public safety.

Mike Bowman said...

For this year I would have much rather seen the Mayor say / do first - we have cut back as far as we can then have to raise the COIT some to pay for police pension and other obligations rather than him raise the taxes THEN say oh lets look and see where we can make some cuts.

Sir Hailstone said...

"Downtown does need some more retail apart from Circle Centre, but it'll come."

Damn. I agree with the anonymous coward at 8:43 AM. The two things that annoyed me when I lived downtown. I think Mr. Welsh will agree with me

1. Only one grocery store - Marsh owned O'Malias - which has a decent selection but the prices are high. Granted with a small store and large overhead. And don't say the ghetto Kroger at 16th & Central. That place is a pit.

2. No general retailer like Target. I know WM will never go there its not in their business model. You have everything high-end retail downtown but very little "in the middle".

Anonymous said...

On Peterson: "Mayor Peterson delivers his best line of the evening when asked about the need for a new criminal justice complex." "There are a lot of higher priorities I have than an office building," he said.

Yea, a football stadium.

Anonymous said...

Sadly, I took my Had Enough Vote Ballard yard sign down today. Ballard may be a great guy but Mayoral potential he is not. Did I change my vote to go with Peterson? Hardly.
Did I make a decision to leave Marion County? Yes.
Should I go and vote anyway? Well, I have a choice between another Mahern and Scott Keller. I'm not going to waste the gas.

Anonymous said...

But Hailstone, there IS a Payless Shoe Store in Circle Center Mall now. That gives you any idea where Circle Center is heading. I'm waiting for a Double 8 grocery (formerly 7-11)to open in the mall next.
The 4th Floor of Circle Center is VACANT except for the scaled back cinema. Lots of boarded over spaces in the mall too.
Circle Center has got maybe 5 years at best.
Sorry, I just don't see a retail boom any time soon downtown especially for a large grocery or a Target variety retail operation.
Yes, I hated the lack of choices too when I lived downtown but the market just isn't there.

Sir Hailstone said...

Don't get me started on the Simons and CCM. This is apparently Modus Operandi for their business. If the reason for other businesses to leave CCM is the same and one I know about for sure - they jacked up the rent bigtime.

I don't have the exact numbers but one entrepreneur we all know well was offered a renewal lease at nearly triple the rent. For 400 square feet or so it was going to be about the price of a new Korean built car PER MONTH!! He closed his store instead.

Sir Hailstone said...

"Should I go and vote anyway? Well, I have a choice between another Mahern and Scott Keller. I'm not going to waste the gas."

Not voting at all is a vote for Bart Peterson.

You heard Bart during the debates he wants the state to pay for his mistakes. So unless you leave Indiana altogether you'll be paying for Bart's incompetence.

Mike Bowman said...

Wilson said "When even Mike Bowman couldn't declare Ballard the overwhelming victor you know the Ballard campaign is still stuck in the doldrums, swirling down the tubes..."

Ballard Losttt ? Not at all Wilson.

I look at it like Dancing with the stars. Some Stars start out on top and in the lead. Some other Stars may not start out as well but over the weeks they improve and challenge the Front runner.

Bart should have come out and hit a home run to bury Ballard but he did not. Ballard did ok and i think will get better.

The longer you leave a challenger hanging around the greater the chances of them knocking you off.

I look forward to the next one and see how all sides improve.

Jason said...

The only part of downtown (IMHO) that would be worth redeveloping is the canal district but that'll never happen. I hate to say it but one of the biggest detractions to living downtown is you're not close to much of anything. Public transit is horrible, like someone said earlier the only grocery store is an overpriced O'Malias, the only real night scene is on South Meridian or Penn, though Mass Ave has it's moments. Circle Center is nice but it's a good 4 or 5 blocks from anything remotely residential, and people wouldn't want to walk it or bother trying to drive it. Every time you go there it's either empty or filled with high school kids. Downtown had a lot of potential, but it's all been squandered as a result of piss-poor planning. Sorry everybody, just needed to vent, thanks!

Anonymous said...

One thing that strikes me as curious, is the fact that Mayor Peterson and his team of At-Large councilors trumpet the 65% local income tax increase as "for the heroes of public safety"..and also "to fund our public safety needs in the long term and near future". Ok, so the tax increase is for public safety, ergo both the Mayor and At-Large councilors are supportive of public safety and those who work in that field.

Why then, did neither Mayor Peterson or ANY of the Democrat At-Large councilors fail to respond to the Fraternal Order of Polices' questionairre, or fail to schedule an interview for endorsement by that body? They didnt even respond to this Q/A sheet from the FOP. A lot of police officers are Democrat, some are gay, some are black, some are white.

Why, Mr. Mayor, and your team of At-Large councilors, did you fail to acknowledge those on whose behalf you allegedly champion?

Anonymous said...

I have to disagree with Sir Hailstone and his 10:20 post......the downtown Omalias is filthy, overpriced and horrible selection and service...the Kroger at 16th and Park has improved considerably...it has a way to go but it is cleaner and cheaper than the ghetto Omalias.....plus Kroger has committed to building a new
SuperKroger there. I live downtown and love it....any place has some probems.