Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Public Safety Is Job One Mayor Plans To Make First Big Announcement On Public Safety In Seven Years

When Mayor Greg Ballard first ran for office in 2007, the first line of virtually every speech he gave during that campaign was to assure voters he planned to make public safety job one if we was elected mayor. Shortly after he began his first term in office, the City-County Council passed an ordinance shifting control of the  recently merged police department back to the mayor's office from the sheriff's office. Ballard quickly delegated control of the police department to his public safety director and thereafter had little to say on the subject. Despite having the benefit of the public safety tax enacted by his predecessor that contributed to his defeat in the 2007 election, Mayor Ballard actually oversaw a police department force that shrank rather than grew in numbers as he signed into law a series of new taxes to benefit the billionaire sports team owners and the downtown convention business while diverting more than a half billion dollars to the TIF slush funds used to finance the private real estate development projects of his campaign contributors, mostly in the downtown area. Morale within the police department is reaching an all-time low under the leadership of one of the most unqualified and incompetent police chiefs ever to hold the position. As he now prepares to seek a third term as mayor next year, he suddenly has a "big announcement" to make on public safety this morning. Will the voters be fooled again?


C. Roger Csee said...

I guess "Lil' Greg" (RINO Mayor Marine)finally read the newspaper & found out his police department is in dire need of fixing!
It's a good thing that Obama told him where he gets his news!

Anonymous said...

What do you think it will do for public safety when tens of thousands of rental units in Marion County go Section 8? I have just been to a large landlords meeting. City planned registration of landlords and inspections for code violations are planned for every single rental unit, affecting the fifty percent of Marion County’s taxable parcels that are rentals versus homeowner occupied. Exempted are certain sweetheart deals being carved out for “Real Estate Professionals” by MIBOR allowing “self inspection” for the well connected, and properties that are inspected by the lax Section 8 inspectors. Landlords know that they can get higher rents going Section 8, but they don’t do it because of the crime. But the tide is now turning and the wisdom of blowing off easy Section 8 money is being re-evaluated. Compared to the hassles and expenses of dealing with city registration and inspection programs, and the repairs and fines they will bring as a plan to raise revenue for the city and public safety, the Section 8 program now looks desirable to almost every landlord polled. Mom and pops who own doubles in Broadripple and rental houses in every neighborhood of the city will now enroll them in Section 8, get larger rent payments, and avoid the city scamming them with inspections and repair orders, and the listing of their private data in city databases. Half of Marion County’s 350,000 parcels are in play. And the Section 8 administrators downtown are thrilled. They have unlimited numbers of applicants for housing. What they need are properties. Up till now landlords have kept most units out of the Section 8 program. But on August 5 the city county council will vote on starting this terrible landlord registration program, which does not have funding beyond what they can raise off landlords, and watch, just watch Indianapolis go Section 8. Every single neighborhood. What’s that going to do to crime, no longer confined to certain neighborhoods, but distributed around the city, coming soon to the double and rental house near you. As poor Section 8 tenants flood into wealthier neighborhoods and thousands of new vacancies open up, Section 8 applicants in counties from Gary to Evansville will flood into Indianapolis to get newly available government paid housing. The city county council thinks they’re fighting empty house blight with this program, but instead they’re bringing an irreversible explosion of Section 8 housing to the city, as the only way Mom and pop can keep the city code enforcers off their back. The council is making a terrible mistake, and the crime rate will go up up up.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 7:15, perhaps you were unaware, but the city does inspect many buildings. I have a section 8 building (senior citizens only) and just a couple months ago IFD came out to inspect our smoke alarms, which are also inspected by HUD. IFD charged $150 to just walk through, before IFD officer Thida Donel got in her brand new city owned IFD Cadillac drove away.

Why does IFD provide Cadillac for in inspector?

Anonymous said...

Section 8 inspections are burdensome for landlords, but not nearly as burdensome as city code enforcement inspections are likely to get. This is not new territory. Bloomington went with inspections of all rented property several years ago, and it raised the costs of doing business so high that rents have doubled since the program began. Boston has thousands of landlords that refuse to register, risking $500 fines, which Indianapolis’ law will also impose for failure to register. Indianapolis intends to force every landlord to affirm under penalty of perjury that their buildings contain no code violations. That is an impossible threshold. These hundred year old buildings all have code violations, many of which would require completely redoing electrical systems and old plumbing original to buildings. They love to say there will be no inspections, but that isn’t true. Many things will get you inspected. Any complaint by a tenant. Any complaint by a neighbor. Any visual by a drive by code inspector of a potential code violation. Failure to register, or to keep all your contact information current. Yes, they require a current phone number from every landlord that reaches the owner, not manager, in case the city want to call, and your home address in their computer system. And if you’re written up, then you have a week to fix the problem, even if redoing your electrical system means emptying the building of tenants and spending tens of thousands. So you can’t believe the proponents of the bill when they say this is just a $5 fee registration program with no inspections. It has gone the same everywhere, and rents will have to raise dramatically to cover landlords extremely higher costs. Everyone will pay. And the city will get the fees, and the city inspectors will get the payoffs, and one by one people will register instead with the Section 8 program, which inspects in order to qualify, but which isn’t built around fining you or causing you to rebuild your properties to current building code standards. Its going to ruin the retirement of thousands of retirees in the county who own a rental house or two and have very thin margins of profit. The big cats are exempted and can use their own inside inspectors. And Section 8 landlords can rely on the Section 8 program inspectors. Everybody else gets city code enforcement, and $500 fines. The city already knows who property owners are because they send us property tax bills. Why do they need this big new invasive program. Its to raise money off us. But several states have seen litigation. The crux is that you can’t treat different property owners differently. They can’t exempt the fat cat professional MIBOR real estate professionals but register and inspect everybody else. Equal protection under the law or something like that. So Indianapolis’ law is going to end up in Court because the landlords are going to sue. And since it will hurt the thousands of black landlords especially hard, they’re going to sue in federal court. Its going to cost the city millions of dollars.