Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Downtown Mafia Pushes New Privately-Owned Criminal Justice Complex To Fuel Their Racket

They've been highly successful in diverting billions of our tax dollars over the past several decades to line their own pockets so it comes as no surprise that the downtown mafia would have their compliant mayor endorse their latest plan to divert another billion or more to their pockets over the next few decades through the development of a new privately-owned criminal justice complex to house the City's criminal courts, jail and other criminal justice agencies. Mayor Greg Ballard's chief selling point is that a complex that could cost over a half billion dollars to build will be done without resorting to higher taxes. Future tax increases will come. He or his successor will just blame them on something else like property tax caps.

One of the early leading contenders for the latest and greatest project is Corrections Corporation of America. Conveniently, the law firm which operates the City of Indianapolis represents CCA, which already earns substantial fees for operating Marion County Jail II. You know the drill. The law firm orders Mayor Ballard to approve the plan as his taxpayer-paid adviser, it gets the taxpayer-funded Greater Indianapolis Progress Committee to publish a bogus report recommending the plan, the law firm ghost writes the solicitation of bids for the City in consultation with its client, sub-contractors favored by the downtown mafia get the cue and align with CCA's proposal, and after private negotiations the proposal selected will be the one represented by the law firm's client. We saw this process play out exactly this way with the privatization of the state's welfare services at an enormous cost to taxpayers and with disastrous consequences for those dependent on the services, even if it proved financially lucrative for the government vendor and the law firm representing it. And we saw this same process repeat itself with the privatization of the City's parking meter assets with similar outcomes.

Unless you are clueless, you know that it is impossible for a private developer to finance the construction of a public works project that will easily top a half billion dollars and then enter into a long-term agreement to maintain and operate that building under a lease-back arrangement at a cheaper cost than the county's building authority could issue long-term, low-interest tax-exempt bonds to build, own and operate that same complex of buildings. Unless the private operator has no intention of making any profits from its undertaking, it is an impossible feat. Even more perverse is the thought of a private company whose profits will be determined, in part, on the number of inmates housed at the jail having control of the same premises housing the offices and courtrooms of judges, court staff, prosecutors, public defenders, probation officers, community corrections and other related criminal justice agencies who play a role in determining the fate of criminal offenders. If you aren't bothered having a fox guard the chicken house, I suppose you wouldn't have any problem with this arrangement. This prospect has already reared its ugly head with Sheriff John Layton suggesting that he prefers the new complex to be built at the site of the old Indianapolis airport terminal so the jail can generate more revenues from housing federal inmates "by serving as a connection point for federal prisoners being transported across the country."

The one thing that is clear is that the downtown mafia has every intention of making sure the new complex is located outside downtown's mile square. Their motive for moving the new complex outside of downtown is self-evident. Of course they want to move out the undesirable lower-income minorities who currently flood into the downtown area daily as they move through the criminal justice system and who too frequently re-offend in nearby neighborhoods upon their release from one of the two existing jails downtown. After all, the City has invested heavily in attracting a higher class of professionals to move into upscale, taxpayer-subsidized housing, including its most recent investment in a high-rise luxury apartment building right next to the City-County Building whose prospective residents would rather not encounter so many grifters and drifters they view as a blight on downtown. And as we all know, downtown Indianapolis is the engine that drives all of Indiana. If it's good for downtown Indy, it's good for the entire state. Nothing more needs to be said. Debate over.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

One thing I've noticed from Ballard: "Corruption is as corruption does."

-Bike lanes that don't make sense
-Bike lanes on 45 MPH streets
-Bike lane in Broad Ripple
-Corrupt "Frank G. Straub/Greg Ballard Regional Operations Center" at Eastgate that stinks to high heaven and is not occupied!
-Flaherty & Collins get the MSA site
-Police are abandonded, understaffed, and have no basic equipment or supplies (cars, staples, post it notes, paper clips, forms)

Woodward & Bernstein said it best: "Follow the money!"

Why is the Southern District of Indiana lacking in corruption criminal filings compared to the Northern District of Indiana????

stevelaudig@gmail.com said...

The effect of endless transport of prisoners etc won't be included in the Environmental Impact Statement. Putting the jail at the airport is beyond stupid unless you put the courthouse there also. All county courts so that the three piece suits are just as inconvenienced as the jailsuits. The hollowing out process of downtown continues. all hole no donut, circle city.

Gary R. Welsh said...

The entire complex will be at the same location, including the courts.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the reason for moving it out of downtown is just money, downtown can't support any more TIF districts.

Gary R. Welsh said...

What becomes of the two jail properties? That will provide two prime real estate spots ripe for redevelopment within the downtown TIF district. You better believe there will be public subsidies offered to a chosen developer within the downtown mafia to develop those sites.

Anonymous said...

I'd be interested in knowing just how many of "Indianapolis downtown, inc's" employees, if ANY, actually LIVE downtown.

tclark248 said...

On a side note; isn't the land Market sq sat on owned by Dick Lugar?. I heard that many years ago the city did a century long lease on it And it was originally put in his moms name. ?