|The greedy billionaire and his trophy wife|
- $3.7 million annually to subsidize the Pacers' operating costs;
- $7.1 million annually for managing the Fieldhouse with a 3% annual escalator;
- $26.5 million paid directly to the Pacers for improvements to the Fieldhouse;
- $7 million paid directly by the CIB to replace the basketball floor, upgrade the building's cooling tower and improve the facility's steam pressure control system; and
- $8 million to pay for the scoreboard and sound system, which was paid for by earlier subsidies the CIB paid to the Pacers and under which the Pacers were allowed to keep all of the additional advertising revenues generated from the digital scoreboard. We're supposed to be happy that we'll get title to the scoreboard and sound system that will no doubt be outdated and require replacement at the end of the 10 years, if not sooner.
Hell, the public would have been much better off if the CIB had bid adios to Herb Simon and forced his Pacers organization to pay up the $50 million minimum break-up fee the original lease agreement provided that he would have to pay if he decided to go back on the original one-sided, 20-year lease agreement he negotiated with the CIB. The Pacers will continue to pay no rent and collect all of the revenues just like they do currently, but as Mayor Ballard says, that's all fair because poor Herb Simon has been operating that Fieldhouse on his dime all of these years.
One thing we know for certain, Herb Simon never operated a business for a loss. He won't release his audited financial statements because he doesn't want to see how outraged the public would become if they saw his actual financial numbers for operating the Pacers and Pacers Sports & Entertainment and at what a variance they are with the figures he shares with the CIB with the traditional wink and a nod. Believe me, the Pacers are a huge cash cow for the billionaire. He's laughing his ass off all the way to the bank about how easy it is to roll Hoosier rubes.
The members of the Capital Improvement Board should be sent to prison for the rest of their lives for the public crimes they have committed to line the pockets of the billionaire sports team owners. Nobody will convince me that these people aren't getting paid under the table to negotiate these one-sided deals. But they can count on our useless local media to pat them on the back for a job well done because anything that's good for the billionaire sports team owners has to be good for Indianapolis taxpayers. And we sure as hell know that neither our federal nor state prosecutor will investigate the massive theft of public funds that are happening in plain sight on an ongoing basis to fuel the organized crime racket that runs this city. Until people take to the streets and begin protesting and getting in these politicians faces and making them fear for their political lives, you will continue to see your quality of life diminish so the one-percent club can enrich themselves and further enslave you.
UPDATE: I surveyed the local TV news reporting on the Pacers' $160 million score. Not one TV station could find any local resident who opposed this taxpayer giveaway. As I reported a few years ago, a dirty little secret got out about how the Pacers take a bunch of local "media" folks, business leaders and PR types on all expense-paid trips to exclusive resorts in places like Cancun, Mexico where they shower them with the finest of dining and expensive gifts to remember their trip. This is one of the many reasons that you will get nothing but propaganda from the local media on these sports deals. They've all been bought off, and their reporting is nothing but lies as a consequence. Don't forget this item former Star columnist Ruth Holladay blogged about in the past:
"Why then did the Pacers just return from entertaining more than 60 people with a five-day excursion to an exclusive resort in Cancun, Mexico? The team's guests, along with their spouses, were corporate sponsors -- Indianapolis businesses that have supported the team financially over the years.
"Included were guests from Finish Line, WISH-TV, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the Indianapolis Star, etc.The trip serves as a thank you with the hope that the sponsorships continue.
"The group was flown to Cancun, wined and dined at le Blanc Hotel and Spa, an oceanside resort that is all inclusive -- all the food and drink one can possibly consume at one hefty price. How exclusive? Each room sported its own hot tub. And no little airline liquor bottles in those rooms. Full liters -- at no extra charge. The trip included side excursions for every one in attendance.
"And to add icing to the trip, the women were given expensive jewelry and the men fancy sport watches. Special arrangements were made to watch the two West Coast Pacer games that were played during the trip.
"Of course, some guests took advantage of the Pacers generosity. The Star was issued four invitations. John Cherba, the paper's director of display (retail) advertising, and his wife took advantage of the free trip to invite personal friends along. Wouldn't want to share the spoils with just anybody now would you?"