Thursday, August 27, 2015

Board of Public Works Approves $6 M Expenditure for Blue Indy Infrastructure

Blogger Gary Welsh over at Advance Indiana has been following the Blue Indy contract with the Ballard Administration (see here and here for the latest).

He reports that on Tuesday the Public Works Board voted on putting $6 M in a Region's Bank escrow account for Blue Indy to draw down - refusing to take public comments when he requested time to speak.

I have embedded the WCTY broadcast of the Blue-Indy escrow account section of the meeting below.

From what was said at the Board meeting, the Ballard administration is pooling the $6 M from three funds - the parking meter fund, the city's cumulative capital projects fund, and the rebuild indy fund.  Whether this allotment of funding sources is a last-minute maneuver on the administration's part, or was buried in the budget from the get-go is not clear.  From testimony by Bart Brown, the Council's CFO, it is clear that the Council did not know of this project and to its thinking, did not appropriate funds for it.

What also is left up in the air, is whether the administration cancelled or postponed other projects in order to have enough money to pay the $6 M tab - which is evidently due by Sept 1 according to testimony on the details of the contract in response to a Board member's question.

The 2016 budget for the Department of Public Works is up at tonight's Council Public Works committee meeting - beginning at 5:30 pm in room 260 of the City-County Building.

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