Friday, December 14, 2012

Council ReIntroduces Mayors' Budget Cuts

The last meeting of the full Council for 2012 will be Monday night.  Much is on the agenda, and much is to be introduced.

Postponed from last meeting due to two Democrat absences are Props 290, 316, 362, and 372.  Prop 316, which amends Council Rules to include information that should be provided for consideration of new or expanded TIFs, is the sole proposal that cannot be vetoed by the Mayor.  Prop 290 limits fraternization between certain employees of City-County government, in wake of the revelation that former Public Safety Director, Frank Straub, has a new main squeeze.  Prop 362 simple adds an additional purpose to which RebuildIndy funds may be appropriated - for recruiting and training new police officers and firefighters.  Prop 372 is the Democrat Council district maps, which must be passed in this calendar year to fulfill State redistricting laws.  It is clear that Prop 372 will be vetoed by the Mayors, but it will be interesting to see if Vaughn wants to fight over fraternization and recruit training options.

Being introduced are three of particular interest.  Prop 447, sponsored by Council President Lewis, would restore the full $652,654 to the 2013 Council budget - including funds to pay for any legal challenge to the competing Council district maps.  On the other hand is Prop 450, sponsored by Minority Leader McQuillen, which would restore only $552,654 to that budget - excluding the funds to pay for any legal challenge to the competing Council district maps.

Prop 448 restores, in essence, the full 2013 budget for County agencies as introduced by the Mayor and as struck down by the Mayors.

Prop 449 would reinstate language in the 2013 budget passed by the Council and struck by the Mayors, that allows for the CIB PILOT money to be deposited into the rainy day fund.

Curious is Prop 458, which would amend the recent requirement that Flea Markets operate under license to exclude sales in Clean Zones of big events.  I'm not really sure why one would want to let folks in these Zones sell goods that could have sketchy provenance, but I guess we'll find out.

The changes to the 2013 cannot be implemented before the end of 2012, thus their timing.  If competing proposals on the Council budget had not been introduced, the Pollyanna in me might have suspected a compromise in the works over the Mayors' line item cuts of the Council-passed budget.  The fiscal ordinance proposals all go to the Admin & Finance committee, which next meets on Tuesday.

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