Friday, July 24, 2015

Who Owns A Beneficial Interest In BlueIndy, LLC?

Now that we know Mayor Greg Ballard and members of his administration broke multiple state and local laws in order to award a 15-year, one-sided agreement with BlueIndy, LLC to operate an electric car sharing service under an exclusive arrangement at a cost of millions of dollars to Indianapolis taxpayers, it's time for City-County Council members to step up and demand the release of the names of every person or business entity that has a beneficial interest in the company.

BlueIndyLLC was registered as a limited liability company with the Indiana Secretary of State's office by the law firm of Ice Miller on March 18, 2014, listing attorney Michael Millikan as its registered agent at Ice Miller's Indianapolis offices at One American Square. The filing indicates the company has managers. The front person for the company is Herve Muller, who is listed as the company's president. Muller's LinkedIn listing associates him with the Greater Atlanta area. Muller has served as vice president and general manager for Bollore Group's Blue Solutions since 2007, which is part of IER Group.

When BlueIndy, LLC applied for an encroachment license, which the Ballard administration granted the company to illegally park its cars on Washington Street, Muller listed the business address for BlueIndy, LLC as 1000 Industrial Park, Belton, Texas. The fees for that encroachment license totaling $30,576.00 were waived by the City. Why?

Last night, the Public Works Committee of the City-County Council approved a resolution on a 5-1 vote that requests the towing of Blue Indy's electric cars that are illegally parked in a no parking zone on Washington Street where they've been sitting for more than a year now. The City-County Council's attorney, Fred Biesecker, maintains the City lacked legal authority to permanently convert the no parking zone for Blue Indy's exclusive, for-profit use. The company plans to establish 1,000 parking spaces at 200 sites around the City for its electric car sharing business, many of which the Ballard administration has taken from the City's current public, on-street parking stock.

At some point, the City could be forced to give up much of the revenues it currently receives from Park Indy, the private company owned by ACS/Xerox that operates the City's parking meter assets, for its loss of revenues caused by the administration's decision to give those parking spaces to Blue Indy. Mayor Ballard raided $6 million from the parking meter fund into which those revenues are deposited to give to Blue Indy. Prime parking spaces have already been taken out of service in downtown, Broad Ripple and Fountain Square where power charging stations are being installed even though the City has not formally inked its agreement with Blue Indy. As of this week, the City's controller had still not signed the contract a deputy chief of staff in the mayor's office, David Rosenberg, signed with the company. How could all of these parking spaces have already been taken out of service and construction work commenced on the permanent infrastructure to support Blue Indy's for-profit business when the final agreement has not been signed, sealed and delivered?

UPDATE: You have to read this idiotic column by one of the Star's newer columnists, Suzette Hackney, who thinks it's silly for anyone to get worked up about all of the laws the administration has broken to benefit Blue Indy because it represents "cutting edge" technology and "trendsetting." Where does Gannett find so many journalists who are willing to pimp for crony capitalism? This gal might actually be worse than Erika Smith, if that's possible.

. . . So why all the controversy, political fighting and posturing? It seems silly that members of the City-County Council are stomping all over Mayor Greg Ballard's alternative-transportation initiative this late in the game. The mayor's desire to make the city more environmentally friendly appears sincere. Any concerns the councilors had with the program should have been raised long before now.

And any serious misgivings certainly have been negated by the councilors' threat to have some of the demonstration cars towed from the charging station on Washington Street. They were actually willing to stage a committee vote for that? How petty and embarrassing, especially in a city that revels in its reputation and time in the national spotlight . . .

But the benefits of car-sharing outweigh the hurt feelings some may have. It is unreasonable for the council to try to delay the implementation of the program with a burdensome franchise agreement, which would allow the body to charge a yearly fee for the length of the agreement and give oversight on future expansion. I don't believe they want oversight; they want to ensnarl the program in so much red tape that the cars are put back in the garage, so to speak.

But I want to live in city that is on the cutting edge of technology and trendsetting. I desire a city that attracts young professionals who want to live and work here, and feel comfortable doing so without owning a car. I want a city that enhances the quality of life for empty nesters who are moving back to the city from the suburbs.

Indianapolis could be all of that. Let's get these cars on the road.


Anonymous said...

Absolutely the question is "who benefits financially?" to get to the bottom of the criminal culprits in addition to our law breaking Mayor Greg Ballard in his latest criminal, illegal Ballard-promoted scheme.

Follow the money and I am willing to wager we will find the corruptocrats who should be served, judged, and if found guilty, sentenced to lengthy jail terms for having prostituted the public trust over personal financial gain.

Democrat Maggie Lews sure has proved to be a very poor steward for us Marion County voters and taxpayers. Asleep at the wheel, these Councilors when not feathering their nests or the nests of their political attorney godfathers.

Flogger said...

I would agree with part of her statements - Why have the Democrats waited so long to challenge Mayor Ballard?? Not only on this issue but so many more, The ROC the Cricket Park and other sweet heart deals. That is though beside the point.

I gather from Hack or Hackney the idea that we have Rules and Regulations that get in the way of her goal, we should just toss the laws out. Ends justifies the Means is exactly what she is saying. Not only that the Ends justifies the Means, we should also ignore the Crony-Capitalism by not even looking into it. She certainly fits the Indianapolis Star template for Reporters or Columnists. See No Evil, Hear no Evil, and Speak no Evil about all the cozy deals brought to you by Crony-Capitalism.

Yes, I am just sure 15,000 Millennials, each making $100K per year are gathering at the Marion County Border and will move down town as soon Electric Cars start up. There is nothing "Green" about Electric Cars, the Electricity must be created some how.

I have rented cars in the past. I have to produce a valid Driver's License, and show proof of insurance or buy insurance from the rental company. How will this piece fit in with Electric Cars??

Anonymous said...

Gary, in re: UPDATE to the article....

Wow, just wow. "Idiotic" is far too kind to describe the sheer stupdity of Gannette employee Suzette Hackney- whose surname is appropriate beyond description.

This lame-brained chick hasn't the slightest idea of the proper purview (a word Suzette will most likely have to consult a Webster's to understand) of municipal government. Miss Hackney, like so many of our severely under-educated more recent graduates, has not one clue as to why this most recent illegal, criminal action spearheaded by the corrupt Republican Greg Ballard is just wrong, wrong, wrong on every count.

Anonymous said...

This is why I stopped buying the Star years ago. Empty-headed, uninformed, knee-jerk babbling by columnists/reporters who think fact-checking is irrelevant.

Multiple laws disobeyed; negative impact on businesses losing valuable parking in areas already limited; $$ impact on city having to pay ACS for parking spaces used; etc.

Ballard is as smart as Andersen's Emperor in "The Emperor's New Clothes"!

Anonymous said...

"I desire a city that attracts young professionals who want to live and work here, and feel comfortable doing so without owning a car."

What a weak, cowardly, imbecilic, coddled, millennial nincompoop.

Indianapolis metro is a massive sprawling area, fortunately. It's not a walking town. It snows for five months, so it's not a bicycle town. Why is this weakling generation being raised to be afraid of driving?

Buy a car, tootsie. It's the only way you'll see anything of your new city.

These "young professionals" being cranked out are just sheltered kids with no experience, no skills, too afraid to drive and looking for a safe desk job that pays them an inflated figure for no real work. "Young professional" is code for "office staffer," though a bad one. A member of a secretarial pool in the 60's knew more about business than these so-called "young professionals."

At some point, this country will grow so weak and soft that someone will look to take a piece out of us. You don't keep a country strong with bicycles and HR departments.

Anonymous said...


They don't care why it's wrong. The frail urbanites want weaky, soft "car-sharing," so the methods are irrelevant. We've lost law in this country. The ends justify the means. Soft urbanites want gay marriage, so we destroy the entire legal structure to make it happen.

Eric Morris said...

I love how the country that supposedly fought fascism in WWII has produced so many Little Mussolinis.

Anonymous said...

Starette: "I want to live in a city on the cutting edge of technology."

Me: "Move to San Francisco, Sweetie."

Anonymous said...

"At some point, this country will grow so weak and soft that someone will look to take a piece out of us. You don't keep a country strong with bicycles and HR departments."

How utterly ironic and moronic at the same time. Actually, bicycles will keep this country a lot stronger than the contemptible Hoosier habit of munching on a Big Mac and smoking a cigarette while driving a 4000 vehicle that requires American lives and Arab oil to move even a single inch.

Anonymous said...

So Ice Miller wrote this illegal contract, eh? Big surprise. This is the same law firm that drafted the illegal contract that allowed the Lawrence mayor's political cronies to steal the city's water utility a few years back? Funny how the disciplinary commission never takes notice of all of the unethical, illegal conduct of the attorneys at these big law firms.

Anonymous said...

Anon 7:25... the incestuous bed of corrupt attorneys who shielded crooked former Lawrence Indiana mayor Tom Schneider has many names yet to be brought to justice. Amazing how one of those connected attorneys who just couldn't find a problem with the illegal Lawrence water company deal is now in the US House of Representatives and her equally corrupt attorney hubby continues to run Center Township through his south side gal so fond of the bottle that the best I can say in her defense is that she doesn't drink all the time because she has to sleep.

Anonymous said...

At this rate the Star will be extinct in a decade! They have done nothing but cover-up the wrongdoing of lowlife politicians like Evan Bayh, Ed Delaney, Julia and Andre Carson. As well as Mitch Daniels and Dick Lugar's decades long corruption! They excoriate Charlie White, Christine Scales, Paul Ogden and Gary Welsh. While celebrating and collaborating with slime like Non-Indiana Resident and butt kisser Abdul, RINO Mayor Ballard, along with every other Indianapolis Official that funnels money to Blue Indy, Angie's List and ACS! Your days are numbered Indystar! Oh Matt Tully keep your resume updated you will be needing it! May the Star pass into oblivion!

Anonymous said...

"How utterly ironic and moronic at the same time."

Oh, shut up, Ninny. There's nothing about you or the type of person you are that is remotely American.

And everyone knows you don't eat a Big Mac while driving. You could mess up your leather seats, and it's too hard to get crumbs out of Mercedes interior.

Anonymous said...

To Anon 12:36: While I agree with you completely, you are wasting your time with that AI's resident retard... for whom two wrongs are only the beginning.

To Anon 11:50: When the Pulliams owned The Star, it was at best marginal. Gene and the family shamelessly puffed favorite politicians and favorite political schemes but the reporters like Cady made buying the pulp worthwhile. Alas, no more Cady's, nothing worth purchasing or reading. For me, Gannett transformed The Indianapolis Star from something tolerable to something wholly unfit to line red biohazard bags of long term care facilities for the incontinent.

Anonymous said...

have you seen this? why has noone questioned this? Since we have a "surplus" let's waste it on stupid signs.

Pete Boggs said...

Beyond metaphor; the Scar personifies Hackneyed expression...