Friday, May 21, 2010
Vaughn Once Registered As Venture Real Estate's Lobbyist
City-County Council President Ryan Vaughn makes a living as a full-time lobbyist for Barnes & Thornburg when he is not attending to his council duties. Advance Indiana has learned from a search of the Department of Administration's website for lobbying registration that Vaughn was registered in 2008 to lobby on behalf of John Bales' Venture Real Estate Services. This is the same firm that got a no-bid contract from the State of Indiana and the City of Indianapolis to broker real estate deals for the respective governmental entities. A quick check of the state's lobbyist registration database for executive branch agencies today shows that Vaughn's registration information for Venture Real Estate in 2008 has been scrubbed. When you attempt to access the registration information, the database returns a "No Results Found" reply. This comes in the wake of the FBI asking for documents related to the lease Venture Real Estate Services negotiated on behalf of the state for an office building owned by a company in Elkhart, Indiana for the Department of Children Services in which Marion Co. Prosecutor Carl Brizzi is a partner and co-owner with Paul Page. The Elkhart lease occurred during the same year Vaughn was once shown as a registered lobbyist for Venture Real Estate Services. Vaughn formerly worked for Marion County Prosecutor Carl Brizzi. The state's lobbying database still lists current registrations for Barnes & Thornburg's Brian Burdick. In the past, both Joe Loftus and Robert Grand have been registered to lobby state government agencies on behalf of Bales' firm. Vaughn has insisted in the past that his lobbying activities in no way intersect with his City-County Council duties despite the fact that both Grand and Loftus, as well as other lawyers at the firm, do extensive legal work for the City and various county agencies. Is the missing lobbying registration information for Vaughn just a coincidence?