Thursday, January 09, 2014

City Spent Nearly $1 Million Last Year On Regional Operations Center It Can't Use

Who knows how much money the Ballard administration is going to drop down this rat hole known as the Regional Operations Center before someone comes to their senses. WTHR's Sandra Chapman learns that nearly another $1 million got spent last year to pay for 24-hour fire protection services ($70,000) and another $57,000 a month for rent on a building IMPD can't use because of unsafe conditions ($700,000). At one time, the City planned to ask the building's owner to pay for the fire protection services, but that's now off the table.
"There were just bigger fish to fry and bigger things to go after," said Deputy Public Safety Director Valeria Washington. She says the fire watch money was negotiated away.
Last year, the city made lease payments of $57,000 a month for a total of nearly $700,000.
Where did the money come from?
Washington says IMPD is footing part of the bill for leasing space at the ROC.
"We did have to shift some things around," said Washington. "Having to budget for $700,000 is a pretty good chunk of change, so there are some things that we've probably had to reprioritize."
A council oversight committee established to review the ROC deal is being stonewalled, and Republican members of the committee appear determined to ensure that all of the corruption surrounding this deal gets swept under the rug.
"We don't have the basic loan documents detailing how much Mr. Carroll and his entities borrowed," announced Councilman Fred Biesecker, who says he has been asking the Office of Corporation Council since November 15 to turn over key documents.
City attorney Andy Siehart says he took over in July of last year and shares the committee's frustration.
"Some documents we simply don't have. I don't have the loan documents," he told the committee. "There's no file that I can go to to say, 'Here they all are.'"
I hope to have more information in the near future about former Public Safety Director Frank Straub's unclean hands in this sordid matter. Meanwhile, Mayor Ballard will go on blaming the taxpayers for not paying enough in taxes as the reason there isn't enough money to fund public safety.


Anonymous said...

What needs to happen here is either a Federal Grand Jury or Marion County Grand Jury seated and presented with the money trail.

Does the ROC track to Chicago connections? Whose relatives are involved? What else happened?

Did Frank Straub have authority to sign the contract without Corporation Counsel review?

Oh, I believe that a proper and thorough investigation would most likely lead to criminal charges...

guy77money said...

I can't say this enough! The bond rating of Indianapolis was AAAA (Yes, that['s 4 A's!) when Ballard took office. It is now down to AA (2 A's). Now for all you (not you Gary) people that skipped business class - this means every time the city borrows money it costs more!

Deals like these will eventually drive the bond rating to one A (a single A!) This is not good - Repeat not good!!!

Ok kids class is out your assignment is to look at how Detroit went bankrupt. Then look up how Illinois and Chicago have gone broke. Class dismissed! ;) ;)

I wish this was funny but it is NOT!!!!!

guy77money said...

Opps no such thing as a 4 A bonds my bad!!!

L Truth said...

Ben Hunter is no different than Lincoln Plowman...He accepted campaign contributions from the ROC building owner, then was able to pass through the council, as Chairman of the Public Safety Criminal Justice Committee, the lease agreement for the ROC. Now he is on the council investigative committee to determine the legitimacy of the ROC lease agreement. Anyone see a problem with this??

Anonymous said...

"Follow the money"