Friday, October 26, 2012

Neither Mayor Cares What You Think

Neither Mayor Ballard nor Mayor Vaughn care what you think.  Not about anything.

The latest example is the acceptance of the Mass Ave project announce yesterday.  The process could have included a public showing of all competing designs so the affected neighborhoods could comment.  It did not.  There wasn't any public process.

There should be clawbacks in the project agreement regarding any final design passing muster with our laws.  I have requested the RFP and all submitted proposals - I'll let you know if there is any such stipulation.  It would be a welcome precedent, if such a stipulation was in place, but I'm not holding my breath.

Now, like the Broad Ripple parking garage, variances are required to actually make the winning design compliant with our laws.  And, not just any aspect of the design - the centerpiece Times Square LED HD screen is a violation of our sign ordinance and is nowhere near a fit with the historic neighborhood in which it would lie.  Its not an accent piece, like some brightly colored throw pillow on an earth tone sofa.  Its a glaring, possibly blaring, monster truck wheel on an Amish buggy.  So, what if it is denied by the BZA and the Historic Preservation Commission? 

 One of Mayor Vaughn's goals for his first term, is to make sure the Boards and Commissions give up any independent thought when it comes to issues Vaughn holds dear - like throwing public dollars needlessly at developers. Expect an extreme amount of pressure to be put on those members of the BZA and the IHPC.

They say that the relocation of the fire station that now occupies the parcel is still under consideration.  So, you'll believe that I'm a true psychic if I tell you it will be located on the north end of 510 N. College.

If I'm wrong, then the fire station location could be opened for public comment - just like it should be.  I'd prefer to be wrong, but I'm not - I'm psychic.

Meanwhile, you might like the new design and all that it implies for the future 'scene' on Mass Ave, or you may not.  It really doesn't matter.


Anonymous said...

On the IBJ web site theya re announcing the mayor's line item veto of the PILOT taxes for the CIB and the city council's own personnel budget. This might get interesting.

Had Enough Indy? said...

I'm in receipt of the Mayor's press release from a friend. I'm looking over the numbers now. To say its interesting, is an understatement. More to come.

Technically, the PR didn't claim a line item veto of the PILOT - just a token statement :

"Mayor Ballard also is sending an "Official Communication from the Mayor" to the Council reiterating the City's position that the PILOT on the Capital Improvement Board (CIB) does not conform to state law and that he will not approve any allocation of funds from this illegal Council action."

Anonymous said...

If the mayor wants to talk about conforming to state law then let's discuss how Marion County bypasses the constitutional debt limit of 2%.

Anonymous said...

Your comment about this going in front of the BZA and IHPC is incorrect. Only the IHPC would hear the variance for the LED sign. Get your facts stratight. Also, going before the IHPC gives the public the ability to voice their opinions, which undoubtedly will be strong.

Had Enough Indy? said...

anon 9:44 - thanks for the correction.

There is no reason to keep the designs from the public BEFORE an agreement was reached between the city and developer. Public opinion should be part of the final decision - not an afterthought.

Same is true for the location of the fire station. It didn't need to move in the first place. It only needed about a million in repairs. Since it is moving, the public should have a real say, again, BEFORE a decision is made.