Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Ballard Blowing Campaign War Chest

Mayor Greg Ballard's campaign committee raised more than $387,000 this past year even though he was not running for re-election. Yet he ended the year with a little over $707,000, just a few thousand dollars more than he started the year. Ballard paid more than $230,000 to campaign consultants for a non-existent campaign. Event costs related to fundraisers proved particularly steep as well. His campaign spent about $75,000 in event expenses. All told, campaign-related expenses topped $380,000.

The wife of Marion Co. GOP Chairman Kyle Walker, Jennifer Hallowel, socked away close to $50,000 in campaign consulting expenses, while Mesta Consulting pocketed $45,000. Jason Sondhi's consulting firm grabbed more than $36,000, and a polling firm, Public Opinion Strategies, nabbed $50,000. Brabender Cox walked away with nearly $25,000 in consulting fees.

The Ballard campaign proved to be a big patron of downtown hotels and restaurants. The Crowne Plaza got over $28,000 for a single event, the J.W. Marriott was paid $8,945 for another event, and the Alexander Hotel produced a tab of $1,056 for another event. Ruth's Chris provided a pricey dinner for more than $1,600, a little less than a tab ran up at Prime 47 in excess of $2,100. A dinner at St. Elmo's cost nearly $1,500. MLR Catering billed the campaign nearly $18,000 for an event, while Morgan Lucas Racing billed the campaign more than $13,000 for an event.

The Indianapolis Star's naive reporter, Brian Eason, has a story commenting on Ballard's campaign war chest, suggesting the money might be used to fund the mayoral campaign of Chuck Brewer, the unknown businessman the Marion Co. GOP has anointed as its candidate this year, or be given to the county party and city-county council candidates. Hallowell tells Eason she hasn't discussed with Ballard what to do with the funds she hasn't yet gotten her hands on.


Anonymous said...

His Oversized Honor pays an obscene amount of money for a campaign that does not exist... doesn't that just sum up the too-long tenure of Indianapolis' Least Loved Mayor in Modern Times?

His own grass roots detest him.

Pete Boggs said...

The Deputy Mayor has already been chosen & approved by the party in both 2007 & 2011. When did they change their minds & for what reason; considering Deputy Mayor Williams is second in succession to be Mayor should anything happen to the Mayor Ballard?

He's been good enough all these years & announced his candidacy ahead of the latest, establishment supported entry, pre or be-faux slating / slighting.