Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Media Playing Catch-Up On Vision Fleet Controversy

Some of our local news media is trying to play catch up after ignoring as long as it could the controversial 7-year, $32 million electric car lease the corrupt Ballard administration entered into with Vision Fleet. Advance Indiana reported last week that Councilor Jack Sandlin asked the city's controller at a meeting of the Public Works Committee about multiple contracts floating around with the untested and unknown company, which only came into existence after Mayor Ballard awarded the no-bid contract to the company illegally as a favor to his political cronies, beyond the one contract the administration reluctantly released after initially redacting most of its content. Fox 59 News' Russ McQuaid has a story this evening on those other contracts and Councilor Frank Mascari's call for a court-ordered injunction to bring a halt to the controversial lease agreement.
City County Councilman Frank Mascari, a democrat from Beech Grove, told CBS4 News that he is calling for a court injunction pull the plug on the City’s $32 million 7-year agreement to lease hundreds of electric and hybrid electric cars.
“The problem is, as you showed me, there are three different leases, two actually, one showing it as a lease and one showing it as a rental agreement,” said Mascari after CBS4 News discovered multiple agreements between the city and its vendor, Indy-Vision Funding. “This whole fiasco should be stopped immediately.”
Mascari and other councilors have said that it appears the administration of Mayor Greg Ballard circumvented city ordinances to turn 10 percent of its fleet into alternative fuel vehicles by leasing the cars under a services contract.
“It had to go through Purchasing. Simple as that,” Mascari said. “It didn’t go through Purchasing. What they did was totally illegal and that’s why we want to file an injunction to stop this as soon as we can.” . . . 
The Ballard administration thinks it's above the law, and why shouldn't it? There sure as hell aren't any federal or state prosecutors willing to do their job and throw Ballard and the sorry thieves he's surrounding himself in the mayor's office in prison where they belong. We're just supposed to sit back and let them rape and pillage all they want before they leave office. Mascari can complain all he wants, but I don't see the Democratic-controlled council going to court to stop the lease. What's stopping them?

WTHR's Mary Milz chimes in with another story here discussing the lease's legality with Councilor Aaron Freeman.
. . .  Republican councilor Aaron Freeman is angry. He feels the mayor's office deliberately bypassed the council on plans to add 400 electric vehicles to the city fleet.
"This is very frustrating," said Freeman. "If it's a lease agreement under law, it has to come to the council."
But it didn't because, as DPW's Jerimaiah Shirk told Sandra Chapman last week, the contract signed was a service agreement.
"We are not leasing vehicles. We are paying for the miles driven," Shirk said.
So what about this? Another seemingly identical contract obtained by WTHR that clearly says "lease?"
"It looks like originally, this was a lessee/lessor lease. Somebody figured out that that was gonna be a problem and we rewrote it to make it not a lessor/lessee lease," said Freeman.
DPW's Scott Manning says not at all.
"There are multiple iterations and drafts of a contract that agree goes through," said Manning. He says this was one of them.
"We are in a lease no matter what they call this," said Freeman . . . 


Anonymous said...

Councilor Aaron Freeman is upset that Greg Ballard lied to avoid going through the City County Councilors on the scam Vision Fleet deal? Wow, Aaron Freeman has been totally asleep at the wheel for about the last eight years as far as I've seen and just now he gets upset at the lies and corruption that are the hallmark of his RINO Greg Ballard's tenure degrading the Office of Mayor.

This is what happens to rump kissers of the duplicitous David Brooks... to cite "Rev." Jeremiah Wright: the chickens have come home to roooooost and the chickens are the foul and dirty deals pushed by the corrupt attorneys, the corrupt law firms, the bond sellers, and the pay-to-play cronies which financially brutalize the taxpayers who bear the burden of the fat cats at the trough.

RINO Republican Councilors like Miller and McQuillen and Freeman treated the Honorable Christine Scales like dirt and now we see what fearing David Brooks hath wrought.... lawlessness in the mayor's office and lie after lie after lie to Councilors and to the constituency.

I am one Republican who gladly awaits the day the ex-soldier no longer makes they mayor's chair groan at the weight it has to bear.

Anonymous said...

Did you notice Vision Fleet hired Jennifer Wagner to flack for them? Dem council members don't trust her, and GOP council members don't like her. Not very bright on their part.

Anonymous said...

Click here for the Next IMPD Police Cruiser demonstration.

Anonymous said...

Anon 9:14 nailed it. And Jen Wagner isn't the only "Jen" the GOP dislikes and mistrusts... but when you have Sam's robot chairs and ghost PCs being run by text message orders, you get the nonfunctional group now in place at the gate.

Anonymous said...

For a couple who hate Greg Ballard, Jennifer Wagner and Gordon Hendry have sure made a lot of money off his crony deals.