Speak Out Loud NA

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Words of Wisdom

I have decided to post a previous contribution to this blog that captured the precise problems and situational circumstances that plague our City today.
I believe that this interpretation of what is happening within the Political Administration of New Albany, and the inner workings of the decision making processes, is worth its words in gold.
To whoever wrote this, One Voice, you have hit many nails right on the head, and you have my admiration and thanks as you are a voice of reason and intelligence.

For the Speak Out Loud NA readers:
To those who value knowledge, truth, freedom, and the sanctity of life as their guiding ideas I hope I can help each of us decipher through the lying, deceit, and struggle that is New Albany politics.

I hope I can inform you about the biggest problems facing our city and my solutions to solve them.

First of all I doubt that Randy has yet to write a single column that has not been manipulated in some detail in order to help Mayor Garner communicate his message.

And you would think that by now the Baylor crowd would have learned some lessons about twisting facts to suit his ideology and punishing those who seek answers and to tell the truth. But he continues to behave like Cinderella's evil stepsisters who cut their feet in order to fit them into the glass slipper, while he is butchering reality to make the fairy tale come out his way.

I come from a very political family so I would like to start with Politics 101.

Why would a successful business person with a Masters Degree raise over $100,000.00 to campaign and get elected to a job that only pays $50,000.00 per year? Does this person have a hidden agenda? I question the additional amount of money
that a politician can earn in a four year term.

It seems that the first rule of thumb in politics is this. You say and do whatever it takes to get elected. You make campaign promises that are impossible to keep and you promise political favors and jobs to those who help you attain your goal.

For example, Shane Gibson, he was his treasurer and now is the City Attorney and stands to make several thousands of dollars connected to the Scribner bonds. Tony Toran worked on the campaign and is now the City Operations Manager, this position was one that Mayor Garner promised to eliminate in as one of his campaign promises, even though Mr. Toran lacks the education, experience, and knowledge for such a position.
I am sure there are many others that we could all name.

The first rule of Politics 101 is this. You need an "inner circle" of friends. These are the people who work behind the scenes and their identities are protected.

Secondly, you have your "money people". These are the bankers, attorneys, realtors and developers.
This is one of the more serious problems that I see.

For example:

Greg Fifer, New Albany Sewer Board Attorney who is also the attorney for the rural developers. And he also represents:

David Ruckman
Robert Lynn
David Blankenbaker
Kent Witten

Now my question is this. Which other developers does Mr. Fifer represent? Second question. Is this not a conflict of interest for us? Why should Mr. Fifer have it both ways?

My solution to the problem would be this. He should be the Sewer Board Attorney and not represent the developers. Or quit the Sewer Board, choose one.

I also want to raise awareness about these other issues, and give solutions.

I totally agree with what $$$$$$$$ said. But let's go a one step further. As I have always been taught, you start at the beginning. In my opinion this is the first thing that needs to be done. Have all accounts frozen. There should be no raises or additional spending. There should be a complete audit in order to discover exactly what we have to work with. We should demand a full investigation into the previous audits. We should focus in ensuring the police and fire department have all their necessities, everything we need to keep our city safe. No police cars should be allowed to be taken home outside of the City of New Albany. To help cut costs, the fire dept. should not go on ambulance runs. There should be no new hiring. All cellphones should be left in the offices after 4:00PM. All personal calls should be charged back to each employee. All city elected officials who are furnished vehicles and gas should park their cars at 4:00PM, including the Mayor. We need to start at the top with each department to sacrifice for all of us.

In my opinion, Scribner Place should be between the YMCA and Caesars. I agree that Scribner Place should be built but the city and the taxpayers should be left out of it. Look at how the $400,000.00 could benefit the city as a whole. So both sides win.

In my opinion, the Stormwater fee should be put, (even though it has been mandated), on the backs of the developers, and not the taxpayers of New Albany. i support the county plan. My question is this. If the Stormwater Project is so urgent, where has the Mayor and the Sewer Board been in the past two years?

In my opinion, each account should be used for it's designated purpose. The sewer account funds should not be used to cover sanitation or used as an emergency fund.

In my opinion, Mayor Garner has already made up his mind to privatize Sanitation. I do not agree with him. I would much rather see my water and sewer bill raised to keep these employees on the city payroll. Without the proper equipment it is impossible for anyone to do their job properly. This is a costly mistake made by the previous administration.

In my opinion, one of the major issues of which I have a serious problem, like many citizens of New Albany, is the same people sitting on the Council who are paid to be on other boards of which their votes can affect the decisions of the City Council.

Solution, an Ordinance stating that a City Council Member cannot sit on any board which could cause a conflict of interest.

In my opinion, one of the biggest problems I see is everyone not paying their fair share of sewer bills with over $170.000.00 of uncollected sewer bills that also means, even if collected, sanitation and recycling are not recovered.

I personally have been told that the Mayor's intention is to bring the billing and collection of sewer bills back in house. I think this is a waste of taxpayers dollars to spend at least $40,000.00 for software, not counting the additional expense to the taxpayer. The Administration should be honest and tell the taxpayers what the $800,000.00 is to be used for. What do they have to hide?

I am only one person with one opinion but I think that I have given the taxpayers a solution to some of our problems. The Administration needs to show a need for all of these expenditures.

We need to stop being so divided, no more labels. No more "haves and have not's", or progressives and little people, etc. We all have a stake in the future of our city.

I read this on this blog a few months ago, "Common sense is seeing things as they are and doing things as they ought to be".

Mr. Mayor, listen to voice of reason.

Come on, hit me with your best shot.

Posted by ONEVOICE to Speak Out Loud NA at 10/18/2005 08:43:15 PM


  • Laura,

    Thank you for your kind words and for posting my comments. There is a lot more to come.

    By Anonymous onevoice, at 8:44 AM, November 09, 2005  

  • It would be nice to have a discussion of this, especially since my name was mentioned, but I'm prohibited by doing so owing to Laura's censorship.

    Bear in mind that I don't censor her or Shirley when they post coments on NA Confidential.

    Maybe you really don't want a discussion ... or else, why have an official policy of censorship?

    By Blogger The New Albanian, at 9:07 AM, November 09, 2005  

  • rich people seek public office all the time--kennedy roosevelt sodrel daniels
    All political people ahve to have an inner circle of friends
    All candidates talk out of bothsides of their mouths--Lincoln was against blacks voting or serving on juries--at least that is what he said in his southern speeches.
    You are right about the conflict of interest in the sewer dept. which I addressed over a year ago to deaf ears.
    I don't think your water bill will go up due to drainage problems

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:53 AM, November 09, 2005  

  • Baylor -
    You are a real $%&%!.
    Do you really think that your little "satires" and rude, insulting stories, and remarks that you write about me and this blog would earn you any respect here?
    Do you think your behavior warrants any reason for me to think you are a reasonable person capable of reasonable discussion?
    I have asked and asked, and I have warned, that you cease your senseless attacks, but you persist.
    YOU, sir have gotten yourself censored here because YOU cannot behave like a gentleman.
    You have no one to BLAME but yourself and your attitude.
    As for your claim that you do not censor me... well, you take my words from here, put them on your blog, and proceed to hacking away at them in an effort to belittle me and the people who comment here.
    I do not come to your blog and harass or mutilate your words on this blog. Why do you do so to me?
    You have earned your banishment from this blog a hundred times over. Proud of yourself?
    You probably are, and that just drives my point home.
    So, go home Baylor. You are NOT welcomed here. Unless, that is, you would like to attemp one HUGE apology for your attacks, and promise to cease doing so in the future.

    By Blogger East Ender, at 10:00 AM, November 09, 2005  

  • the new albanian


    You need to go back to your own blog "Roger" and write your own opinion.

    If people want to read what you write and all your personal attacks on Laura and others, including Speak Out Loud NA.

    We will stop by and read your opinion.

    Your bottom line problem "Roger" is with Laura on "Anonymous Comments"

    Like onevoice said Rodger Dodger hit him with your best shot on your own blog!

    This is Laura's blog.

    Concern Taxpayer

    By Blogger One voice, at 10:02 AM, November 09, 2005  

  • The New Albanian,

    You mentioned that you do not censor Laura or me when we post on your blog.

    You may not censor the two of us but I have seen comments which have been deleted by the blog administrator on NA Confidential.

    My first comment yesterday on your blog was in reference to your referring to my comments at the Council Meeting as "Luddite Karaoke" which I took as an insult. I am still not sure what a Luddite is, but I am sure it is not a compliment. After that I was trying to answer the comments addressed to me. I don't think I was rude. The only mistake I made was believing that Randy & Brandon Smith were brothers. No reflection on either of these gentlemen, I just thought they were brothers.

    As to Laura, I know she is capable of defending herself but your posting yesterday was over the line. Laura has always taken the high road and not ridiculed anyone. She states the facts and backs them up. Like it or not that is the truth.

    This is my opinion, of course.

    By Blogger shirley baird, at 10:35 AM, November 09, 2005  

  • *I think maybe the word you are looking for is censure*

    By Blogger ceece, at 10:47 AM, November 09, 2005  

  • the new albanian

    The line is drawn in the sand.

    And Sir you have came over the line to damn many times.

    You and the so called progressives are the real C.R.A.P of New Albany.


    Thank You for the excellent suggestions and a real lesson in Politics 101 in New Albany. You are an intelligent, talented writer.

    I do hope you have more to say in the future. Because you sure got my attention.

    Thank You

    New Albany citizens needs to hear the truth.

    By Anonymous GARY WEBB, at 10:53 AM, November 09, 2005  

  • Shirley, comments that have been deleted at NAC have been done so because (a) they were examples of unwanted comment spam (since rectified by enabling word verification), or (b) the writers did not identify themselves as is our consistently stated policy.

    Note that it is logically impossible to censor someone unless that someone is a someone and not anonymous. That's because you can't erase something that isn't there.

    Thanks for reading, Shirley. You're always welcome to comment on NAC, as is anyone who is identifiable as a person and not a literary construction.

    By Blogger The New Albanian, at 11:19 AM, November 09, 2005  

  • Oops, I forgot -- thanks for your thoughts, Ms. Denhart.

    By Blogger The New Albanian, at 11:19 AM, November 09, 2005  

  • Anonymous

    Walk the halls of The City County Building today Mr. Anonymous. And then come back and tell us who the Rich Politicians are downtown.
    That are making costly mistakes on behalf of us. The citizens of New Albany.
    Like onevoice said- These are problems and here is some possiable solutions...
    I make decisions everyday. And I am far from being rich. But if I can see the problems with mismanagement and over spending. Why can't they? And I do know several elected officials that are struggling as well. So sell it to someone else.
    Not every candidate talks out both sides of their mouth. I know several Democrats and Republican office holders who says the City is headed for disaster.

    So I guess the rich will be the only survivors of this Adminstration?

    Laura Great job on Words of Wisdom...

    By Anonymous KAREN NEELY, at 11:20 AM, November 09, 2005  


    These articles are not worth taking our time to respond.

    I highly suggest we ignore them, and concentrate on the onevoice comments.

    And stick to the real issues.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:50 AM, November 09, 2005  

  • Excellent article onevoice.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:55 AM, November 09, 2005  

  • The Real State of mind in New Albany

    I love New Albany. I've voted in every local election since I was 18. I've worked on campaigns becaused I believed in the policies of the candidate.

    Something has gone terribly wrong in the last 2 years.

    This adminstration has throw each and everyone of us citizens under the bus like Laura says for greed, and gain.

    So when Mayor Garner speaks. I expect him, to lie, to prevaricate, to twist meaning in new and insidious ways, and to defy every line of reasoning ever declared sacrosanct in New Albany history of Public Service.

    We all think about the additional fees. I also think about the increasing crime in our City, the decrease in affordable housing and loss of jobs.

    And I will expect nothing from Mayor Garner about any of the real problems facing New Albany.

    And as I and others have discussed often lately, we all feel like helpless plebe in an autocratic system which doesn't want to know we exist until it's time to tax me, and ask for my support and "MY VOTE."

    I need this to change. Alot of us do.

    Outstanding comments onevoice.

    By Anonymous LEGAL BEAGLE, at 12:50 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • Craw back under your rock-- NA Confidential

    Words of Wisdom is awesome.


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:03 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • Ceece,

    Thanks, I didn't think that word look right but I re-read Roger's comment and that's they way he spelled it. Guess I should have used a dictionary.


    By Blogger shirley baird, at 1:09 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • One Voice,

    Truly an excellent article.

    By Anonymous legal beagle, at 1:22 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • ha, it's ok :-)

    By Blogger ceece, at 1:25 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • Great comments out there! Putting it out there, yes!
    And I got to say, I may check the other blogs to see "what" they have "created" to smear someone, but absolutely do not respond to the ludicrous attempts at veiled slander/character assisinations.

    At the same time, you can't remain in the dark and not know what they are saying. I wouldn't expect a reasonable discourse if I logged in and tried. Don't you understand? They have 1 agenda and 1 only - theirs. They do not need facts, history, etc. I would state in my opinion they grasp at straws, and ignore the facts and $$$$ signs. That's their right (though I don't see any business nor government entity surviving like that).
    I still feel they are bordering on slanderous lawsuits if they keep it up. Maybe Pancho Villa and Don Quixote will take care of Beer Belly for us. We're sure they could EDUCATE him, if they so chose, right Pancho? Our opinion.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:38 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • I have been reading these blogs for the past couple of months. Only one person that I am aware of that I actually know and have met one other. Both are because I have been in their places of business making LOCAL purchases that hopefully will lead to a better NA for us all. I say the above in an attempt to show that there are no personality conflicts and/or agendas on my plate--at least at this time.

    At times some of the postings at NA Confidential do seem somewhat demeaning. I personally think the false link is just flat wrong.

    On the other hand all this talk of FACTS and backing them up on this blog AT TIMES is little far fetched. There is a lot of inuendo
    and twisting things to fit the story. Example--Mr. Goldberg's work on Sanitation/Sewers. $$$$$$$$ said that proved that Sanitation was propping up Sewers and Miss, Mrs., Ms,(sorry, don't know)Oates pretty much agreed. Even after Mr. Goldberg said this was not true I have never seen a retraction. This does make me wonder about other things that I read.

    Any of us can make mistakes and just be wrong but we need to own up it. Believe me, I screw up often. And if I am wrong about what I have posted, I will own up to it.

    By Blogger Iamhoosier, at 3:15 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • In the interest of full disclosure, the one person I know is Roger Baylor and the one I have met is Randy Smith. Meant to put that in my post above.

    By Blogger Iamhoosier, at 3:39 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • Great article. We have tried to have all accounts frozen, along with salaries. When they mislead the state and hid salaries in other funds that aren't being looked at as part of the budget, that's when the problem gets ugly, because your ten days to protest the budget are already up. We've tried, some on Council are willing. Great article! Keep up the goood work.
    Again, those trucks, cans and lids were to come out of other funds, i.e, Riverboat and Edit, to pay for same. If these monies were/are being correctly applied, they MUST be subtracted from the debt now listed under Sanitation.
    Also, the EPA edicted under Appendix D within Consent Decree that $270,000.00 per year be put into the City's inner sewer maintenance fund, therefore Council passed a law dictating same. For the past two years, it was misapplied towards Bond payments. Now, the Sewer Board also has to find $540,000.00 to replenish this, and by alrights it should come from EDIT; seeing it violated Councils' directives. The Mayor does not know how he is going to pay that money back, but that is involved in litigation, Appendix D of the Consent Decree/Plan/CAP.
    But Hey, What Do We Know About Our Finances? I'd say alot more than they want us to or are willing to give credit for. Let them think we are ignorant. That will be their downfall. Thanks.

    By Anonymous $$$$$$$$$$, at 4:13 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • my opinion.. I am faxing this post to all of my family and friends. And feel it deserves alot of creditability. I have read several nasty attacking comments and I truly feel it is uncalled for. Who ever you are thenewalbanian you are the rudest person to ever print anything on this blog. Laura your blog has given us more information then we could have ever expected out of the New Albany Tribune.
    onevoice who ever you are done a great service to the citizens of New Albany.
    Thank you

    By Anonymous JANICE SWARENS, at 5:06 PM, November 09, 2005  


    Any New Albany Citizen who is interested can visit the City Clerk's Office and view the City Council minutes to verify that the $270,000 in EDIT money was committed to the inner-city sewer repairs.

    The City Administration & Sewer Board has allowed this $270,000 each year to be used for bond payments, and leave us in the city with broken sewer lines and sewer overflows.

    If some of the Progressive Group was
    getting this sewer mess backed up in their basements, they would be calling for the $270,000 to be used as it was intended in the city.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:58 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger One voice, at 8:04 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • Great article ONE VOICE. Spoken like a true champion.I too smell Lawsuit. Keep doing what you do best Laura. It seems that your really hitting some sore spots with some people. The truth hurts.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:05 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • words of wisdom , more like words of ignorance, and in case legal bagel is reading that isnt slander because ignorance means not informed or knowing.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:58 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • In regards to the November 5, 2005. Letter To The Editor by Todd Bailey

    In where Mr. Bailey is critizing Councilman Larry Kochert and other City Council Members.

    I feel the need to express my opinion with some of the facts Mr. Bailey seem to have left out.

    The real facts:

    1. Mr. Bailey you live in Greenville not in New Albany.

    Correct me if I am wrong.

    2.Police Chief Merle Harl lives in Washington County?

    Correct me if I am wrong.

    3. My records show over 50% of New Albany Police Officers live outside New Albany City Limits.

    4. My records also show some New Albany Police Officers live in Sellersburg, Greenville, Washington County, and Mockport.

    Is this fair to the Taxpayers of New Albany to foot your Gas Bill for your take home cars?

    You say Na Police Officers contribute 20 gallons of gas a month. I would hardly feel this to be sufficient. In fact not even 50 gallons a month would be enough. Since again you Mr. Bailey live in Greenville.

    Second of all I applaud Mr. Kochert, Mr. Schmidt, Mr. Price, Mr. Coffey.

    Who are doing what they have been elected to do.

    And that Sir is what these Councilman are paid to do. They represent the Citizens and Taxpayers of New Albany.

    It is their duty as our Council Members to Question & Act upon ways to save the City Money.

    Of the 4 City Council Members Mr. Bailey that you have mention. 2 have connections to the New Albany Police Dept. Council women Beverly Crump and Councilman and Police Officer Jack Messer. And then you mention Councilman Blevins who works for the Sanitation Department.

    If you Sir check their Voting Records you will see who is pushing their own personal agendas.

    So who in the Hell are you Mr. Bailey to critize Councilman Larry Kochert and the other Councilman. When they have no agenda.

    Mr. Bailey you have the courage to critize a person only because it is not about fairness. But only because you are the one "Sir" who benfits from this gas program.

    You are also forgetting the taxpayers paid for your Police Car. We also pay for the tires, the oil changes, maintance and repairs on your police car. The Insurance, computer and etc.

    So the next time you decided to write another Letter To The Editor you need to put all the facts in there.

    Instead of whining about our City Council Members.. Kochert, Schmidt, Price, Coffey.

    They're doing there job and Looking out for the Taxpayers.

    Because in the end the Taxpayers of New Albany have to pay for Government Waste.

    And that's a taxpayers opinion

    Concern Taxpayer

    By Blogger One voice, at 9:12 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • Nice job, Concerned Taxpayer. Keep up the good work. Our opinion, too.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:18 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • Larry Kochert, as a member of the sewer board, has watched as that fund has been exploited and mis-used for years. His agenda? Bring the Sewer fund back within the guidelines of what the sewer fund is supposed to be used for, and NOTHING else.
    Bill Schmidt, as a dedicated PUBLIC servant, and has worked diligently to TRY to save some money from being thrown on the backs of the citizens for mistakes made by mis-management of funds.
    Dan Coffey, although sometimes a bully, has the guts to question authority. He doesn't just give a nod when the Mayor asks him to. He asks the hard questions, and brings other ideas to the table.
    Steve Price, as a newcomer to city politics, has stood by his campaign promise to be fiscally responsible. He is compasionate about the "lower income class" of citizens, and tries to protect them by pointing out wasteful spending.
    Nobody will ever convince me that these four councilmen are not in touch with their constituency, and passionate about accountability.
    The other side of the table, well, that's a horse of another color.

    By Blogger East Ender, at 9:48 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:38 PM, November 09, 2005  

  • IGNORANCE IS NO EXCUSE. Certain Taxpayer Activists have noticed certain people have no needs of numbers, nor facts. It's called "blind faith" once again.

    They have not fought in the "trenches", so to be, and haven't a clue as to how government SHOULD work - for US, by US, etc. Blind Faith, sounds like they are GWB all the way, no matter what they say. Actions speak louder than words.

    Tell it Like It is, ... Recognize that song? THAT'S OUR OPINION!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:25 AM, November 10, 2005  

  • TO THE 9:26 Posting:

    You are so off base, it's not even funny. As a person who knows these people you mention, very well, you are totally off in left field. If you think...well, I'll leave it at that. Anyone who knows these people over the past 20, 15 or 10 years, know you are simply blowing smoke out of your a**. I'd say "how dare you", but you'd would attack with more vehemence. Take your opinions back to your own blog; we have all noticed you aren't getting any comments, rather than your buds.
    If you don't have any thing good to say, or to contribute to the conversaton/issues at hand, why do you bother--that's right, you are acting in the Mayor's behalf.
    Has Poncho Villa paid you a visit yet? I'd be worried if I were you. Take care of yourself; just our opinion.

    By Anonymous Someone in the Know...., at 2:34 AM, November 10, 2005  

  • To Concern Taxpayer, One Voice, $$$$$$, and especially Laura.

    Keep up the good work. You DO back up your statements with facts.
    I still believe some people are jealous of the popularity of your blog.

    Don't mind the small minded people.


    By Blogger shirley baird, at 7:33 AM, November 10, 2005  

  • To whomever said all we do is slur other people and the little people will always be little:

    Apparently, you are one of the so called "Baylorites". Some of the other blogs do nothing but belittle and slur council members and other citizens.

    At least we try to stick to the issues but when good people like Anna and Bill Schmidt are attacked it is time to say something.

    You people seem to be spoiling for a fight. That means that you cannot focus on the issues because you know you don't have a leg to stand on. I'm sure someone will come back and call me crazy, go ahead, take your best shot. You still can't stick to the issues.

    My sincere opinion

    By Blogger shirley baird, at 12:16 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • There really is no need to defend anyone whos' actions speak louder than words. WE, the ones that matter, know the works of people in this town and that is all that matters.
    Please, as the last post said, let's get back to business. You are being "sucked in", and you should blow it off. It really isn't worth anyone's time (nor money) to stray away from our issues. Our opinion.

    By Anonymous $$$$$$$$$$, at 12:49 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • Laura,
    Please allow me to thank Lodema Applegate and Bob Hornung for their work on the Township Advisory Board. (Draw a firehouse on a napkin, and then wonder why the Board doesn't trust you, hee hee.)
    To the township citizenry that were in attendance last night, thank you, also. We all pay some of our taxdollars to the township, and it's high time that this HOUSE was put in order, and we ALL knew it.
    Good to see a Democrat and a Republican working together for the good of all. Thank you, thank you. Let the chips fall where they may.
    We won't even talk about what happened with NA's volunteer firemen, will we?!? Nah, better leave that one alone.
    Voters did well when we got this board in place, thanks guys!
    All we can do is clean up one mess at a time.....
    Thanks again, but this is strictly OUR opinion.

    By Anonymous An Appreciative Democrat, at 12:55 PM, November 10, 2005  

    SEPTEMBER 2005

    Grantline Road
    $ 832,894.00

    Bond Payments:

    3/2006--$ 36,563.00
    3/2007--$ 33,475.00
    3/2008--$ 30,225.00
    PAYMENTS $613,069.00

    Each Year New Taxes are collected and arwe added to these funds.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:00 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • New Albany Sewer Board Engineer:
    GRW Inc. has named Todd Solomon to it's Louisville office as Project Manager.

    By Anonymous $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$, at 1:05 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • We know, but they keep telling us they "need" that money for sidewalks, etc. The TIF money was set up for the very purpose we need it for, rather than putting the stormwater fee on taxpayers' back.
    But, remember, someone did approach the Council in a timely fashion and asked for that fee, if it had to be, go through the County tax rolls in the name of equity/fairness for all. Do you remember who stood up and said that absolutely could not be done because it would affect the "General Fund"? Then, the decision was that could be done next year -- but see, it was too late after the meeting that was said to taxpayers because public hearings couldn't be held in time. The lies and twisting and turning are driving, I guess, probably all of us nuts.
    Why do they have to treat us so ignorantly? There are some lawyers in this town well versed on TIFS, sure do wish one I know in particular would weigh in.
    Thanks for the numbers. And that's just ONE (1) TIF area, amazing.
    But, hey, it's just money.

    By Anonymous $$$$$$$$$$, at 1:10 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • To whomever is using my login $$$$, which I don't care, yep...we know. We love GRW, and we love Mr. Solomon -- ought to be a good fit. He is not leaving our Sewer Board, though, and that is great news. Mr. Solomon is a diamond in the rough, and we all should appreciate what he has tried to do for the city, he and Mr. Utz, but that's our opinion.

    By Anonymous $$$$$$$$, at 1:12 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • What is the information on the $2.2
    Million Dollar Bond money for Charlestown Road? Any one know what this is all about?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:13 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • Can anyone please explain how using TIF money to comply with the federal drainage mandate will spur economic development?

    The widely accepted criteria for deciding whether to use TIF funds as a tool in a specifc area on a specific project is whether or not the project funded will generate, via new economic development, enough new revenue to pay back the TIF bond in a reasonable amount of time.

    I've not seen any discussion of the drainage project with regard to economic development.

    By Blogger bluegill, at 1:17 PM, November 10, 2005  


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:18 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • Lodema Applegate represents the taxpayers well.. She's on top of checks and balances. And she knows what to do.
    Hat's off to Matt,Lodema,Bob.
    Everybody on that board works together for all the taxpayers.


    By Anonymous WOLFE LAKE FAMILIES, at 1:34 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • Bluegill: Seeing they are putting drainage and whatever else under Stormwater, don't you think drainage, and sewers, and stormwater causing problems are not economic development concerns? Ever stood in Kroger's parking lot on State Street after a gooood rain and the water is up around your ankles?
    Are you aware alot of the comtamination found in testing of the creeks, etc., revealed most of it was from cross-connections between sewage and storm lines, and homeowners' leaky laterals.
    I can justify this as a viable and feasible economic tool. Try getting off I-64 onto State Street after a good downpour...we have people accessing this area to go to CEASARS, at least that one should fall under your criteria.
    The law's criteria is exact, and we have fought too many battles over this issue to not realize what these (our monies not making it to the General Fund) monies ARE FOR.
    Where IS THAT Attorney I gave my book from Baker and Daniels about TIFS, CAGIT, EDIT, and there's another one that's not coming to mind. Probably because they haven't leveled that one on us yet. Study that book, Bluegill. Bakers & Daniels represents City & Towns of IN and clarify these issues quite well for Council and citizens. Good reading to you, sir. It can be a bear figuring out the way the State came up with these "creative" financing ideas that to me, we are abusing.
    Just my thoughts. Thanks for asking though. Always happy to answer, if I can. Have a good one.

    By Anonymous $$$$$$$$, at 2:30 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • P.S. It's a Federal STORMWATER, not drainage mandate. The Mayor is putting Drainage under Stormwater. But, why do you have drainage, if not from stormwater? Kind of catch-22, hey?

    By Anonymous $$$$$$$$$, at 2:31 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • has anyone else noticed this post skitzing out?

    comments keep disappearing and stuff....

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:43 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • Thank God for The Little People of New Albany


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:15 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • Hell of A Great Article Onevoice.
    That's the real truth about Smalltown Politics.


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:22 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • As everyine will notice, I have removed the comments that have no bearing on the issues we are attempting to address.
    There is far too much to talk about without getting sidetracked into arguments and rude personal assults that Roger, Randy, and Tim, et al, instigate with their viscous remarks.
    It should be obvious to all what their tactics are, and why.
    Their goal is to goad us into refuting their comments, thus getting the discussion off of the pertinent issues at hand.
    This ridiculous merry-go-'round is going to stop here and now.
    Any comments that are posted on this blog that are offensive and not issue oriented, will be deleted. No exceptions.
    Note to other blog administrators:
    NO portion of the contents of this blog are to appear on other blogs for use in a slanderous manner.
    This is my LAST 'request'.
    No more harassment will be tolerated.

    By Blogger East Ender, at 3:35 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • I'm still wondering how using TIF in this instance will generate new revenue.

    To my knowledge no businesses have decided not to locate in New Albany or have left specifically because of poor drainage at Kroger's or the State Street exit (or anywhere else in the city for that matter). Do you have evidence of that? In my conversations with economic development folks and real estate agents about potential development and redevelopment, it doesn't seem to be an issue at all.

    There's a difference between what TIF can legally be used for (and it's questionable in this instance) and how to best use it.

    As I mentioned before, TIF is designed to essentially pay for itself. A bond is floated for a project and the new revenue that results from the development spurred by that project is used to pay off the bond. How will the stormwater/drainage project generate that new revenue?

    Are there substantial areas of the city where property values would increase significantly as a result of better handling of stormwater? If so, where are they?

    Are there businesses waiting to see how we handle the mandate before deciding to locate here or see it as an incentive at all?

    The same revenue question can be asked about using EDIT for sanitation. How will that help economic development?

    Besides the fact that no one has offered any evidence that suggests revenues will increase from either expenditure of economic development funds, it just seems terribly inconsistent to me to complain about government moving expenses from one fund to another and then to suggest doing the same as a solution.

    The trucks and cans are still sanitation expenses even if you move them into another budget category. The same principle applies to stormwater expenses.

    Why is it bad when certain people move those expenses around but a good solution when others suggest it? Simply moving expenses from one line item to the other isn't a solution. The expenses are still there with no new revenue to pay for them. Isn't that the problem already? Why continue with the same methodolgy and expect change?

    It's a little like Eastender mentioning that Larry Kochert has watched the sewer fund be abused for years. Is that what you all voted him into office to do? Watch? Where was he last year and the year before that and the year before that... How much longer are we supposed to allow him to get warmed up?

    By Blogger bluegill, at 3:38 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • Bluegill -
    How about giving us some examples of what TIF funds have been used for in the past, and how those uses have encouraged, or resulted in new economic development?
    I am honestly interested in what projects TIF dollars have funded. I am a bit ignorant about the historical useage of this fund.
    However, I do know that dipping into 'other' funds to pay for certain expenses not related to that fund has been a common practice of this administration.
    They seem to have no problem doing such when it behooves them and their agenda, but then scream bloody murder when it is suggested these funds can be utilized to keep addtional fees off the backs of citizens.
    If you are worried about economic development, consider for a moment how attractive the demographics are for potential new businesses when the poverty rate in the city continues to climb.
    Expendable discretionary income is becoming more and more rare for many families in New Albany.
    I believe that the lack of Downtown area development is at least partially related to income statistics for inner-city residents. Most new development is occuring in the fring areas where urban sprawl has enticed the higher income households, and the proximity to County residents is attractive.
    Why plop a good business down in the middle of a population who cannot afford to be consumers of the product or service?
    Furthermore, as I think about the newer retail development along State Street, it does occur to me that most have been placed
    'uphill'. Such as Home Depot, and the Strip Center at the expressway exchange. Even Burger King is sitting on a hill, and the tire store. Is this coincidence?
    Everything goes hand in hand, and we would be foolish to think that basic city services (sanitation) and infrastructure maintenence (stormwater & drainage) would have nothing to do with positive aspects of economic development.
    I have lot's more to say on this matter, but it will have to wait. I have some work to do.

    By Blogger East Ender, at 4:53 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • I'd be interested in learning more of what TIF funds have been used for in the past as well. I've pretty much already stated what criteria I think should be met to justify their usage and would judge past and future projects largely on that. Since we can't change the past, however, my focus would be on future projects.

    Your comments about this administration and others (and, quite frankly, my own comments about this administration and others) are why I think it's important to discuss and try to establish reasonable criteria for such expenditures. If judgment about those expenditures is based on pre-determined criteria rather than on who is making the judgements, then political game playing becomes less important. You may be right about some past behavior. I may be right about others. With a specific framework with which to judge, however, it's a matter of reason rather than she said, he said.

    I think the situation on State Street is honestly just pragmatism at work. The lower, flat ground was developed first since earth moving and infrastructure costs were lower. New development has been occuring on higher, hillside ground because that's simply what was left.

    I think your assessment of city demographics playing a role in business decisions is correct. That, in conjunction with a negative view of sprawl which I assume you share, are some of the reasons my wife and I chose to move downtown. We have suburban aquaintances who think we're crazy for wanting to live around "those people". I happen to think "those people" can benefit from redevelopment just as much as anyone else (the reasoning for which I'll have to save for later as well due to time constraints). Our families are those people.

    As I mentioned to you long ago, I think one of the most important parts of that process is showing, hopefully by example, people who haven't had some of the opportunities that I've had a better way to approach the situation, ie, not just encouraging them to speak out loud but to speak out loud well.

    I'll probably get panned for saying so but that's not at all meant as an elitist comment. The one thing I've always agreed with you about (and I think you may be surprised at the people who also agree) is that every opinion matters. Sometimes, though, the way one expresses those opinions matters just as much, if they're to be taken seriously. If I can't take that hard earned lesson and share it with others, what good am I doing? When I challenge the opinions of others, I fully expect them to challenge mine. We'll both get better that way.

    Your right also in the idea that sufficient infrastructure is necessary for economic development. But, if we continue to spend all of our economic development money on repairing perceived immediate needs, there's nothing left for improving our future prospects. What happens the next time we have a breakdown and haven't generated extra revenue? We end up stuck in the same cycle.

    If we use a good portion of our money to consistently generate additional money, though, we can be making progress on current repairs and ensuring that we have the money for those inevitable repairs and rising costs in the future.

    That's overly simplified, of course, but it's a start.

    By Blogger bluegill, at 6:00 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • Bluegill: One way monies like this being helpful would be the example of how Council slated $2,000,000.00 of TIF money in the Industrial Park area for sewers, for more economic development in other words. There was an attempt to not follow Council's orders and use that particular money for a private access road for an already existing business. The Sewer Board would have to tell you if we have used that $2,000,000.00 yet for sewer expansion for future economic development growth in the Industrial Park area.
    There are TWO lists of Developers WAITING for New Albany and the EPA for credits so they may build, creating more economic development. The Council slated that $270,000.00 per year be put into a special "inner-City maintenance" fund (because of the EPA's edict), which was misused to the tune of $540,000.00 for the purpose of paying a Bond. This violates our Consent Decree with the EPA. One reason it matters so dearly as to which fund the money comes from (in this case EDIT). These are "laws" Council passed specific as to what, where, when, why, and how EDIT would be spent. That's THEIR job.
    Some, not all of the areas that would benefit, would be at the foothills of Silver Hills, which would be part of this City.
    The County is now under a mandate to prevent their stormwater from washing down on us, so it should be relatively easy on us.
    Another area of town that has serious drainage issues is in Freedom Square (foothill of the Floodwall, between Pearl and State). Parking lots, etc., flood like crazy back there. We took pictures of the insides of the big storm water grate back in there and found a huge roll of white plastic sheeting (never used) from a drycleaners locally, but we could never figure out which one.
    We need to fix that area in the name of economic development what with the Y and Scrbner Place being planned.
    As far as moving the monies around to meet "perceived" emergency situations, the monies for these big red monsters (garbage trucks) and cans (I think) were to come out of EDIT. They couldn't seem to pledge out EDIT out fast enough. Now EDIT can be used for administrative costs, so...
    Because of the laws Council passed, the monies from EDIT that have misapplied, or spent ill advisedly, happened under the past and current Mayors. We're just trying to follow the money. If you talk with your County Rep, they will tell you the EDIT draw was lower this year and that reflects a drop in employment, since that is an Economic Development Income Tax.
    And, maybe someone else can tell you projects done in TIF areas; I can only think of maybe one. Let's see, wasn't the State Street Parking Garage (which was going to revitalize downtown) paid for out of TIF, but didn't generate enough monies for the Bond and we had to pay for it out of Redevelopment, along with the light bills, etc.. Think that's the way the story goes. Bond there is paid, now collecting revenue that can only be used for that area, and that might include the place I was talking about in the rear downtown.
    Don't know if that helps any, but that's how I see it.
    True, Sanitation's trucks and cans and lids probably shouldn't have come out of EDIT. But, the Mayor was a Councilman at that time and he DOES know where the money was to come from and it wasn't from Sanitation's budget, because of a past Administration's mistake.
    Thanks for letting me vent (that's what I feel like I'm doing anyway). Hope that's not how it's taken. My views only, and I thank you for letting me share.

    By Anonymous $$$$$$$$$, at 7:13 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • I truly feel after re-reading onevoices comments that our Mayor should really read this information. This is truly one of the best articles I have read on your blog.
    Thank you for having the courage to write this.

    By Anonymous MARK STREIGEL, at 7:41 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • P.S. I think money is slated for widening Grantline Rd soon, out of TIFs; and Charlestown Road has been taken care of out of TIFS for economic development. And as a correction to my last posting, lids I think, were to be out of RIVERBOAT, not EDIT. I beg your pardon. It still is not Sanitation's problem it wasn't. I'll give you this much, it's a mess trying to keep track of all these events, per se.

    By Anonymous $$$$$$$$, at 7:43 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • Oh, no, we have to go all the way back to R99-44. This resolution has haunted me for years, oh no... Everytime I think I WILL NEVER hear those words again, up it pops. R99-44 first deals with the TIF monies. Uggghhhhh. That's a whole total different story, R99-44. Nightmares are already ensuing, as we speak. Some other time, perhaps. Take care!

    By Anonymous $$$$$$$$$$$, at 10:10 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • Thank you folks for the nice, and intelligent discussion of a very important component of the city's financial resources.
    I have no doubt we could discuss this issue for quite some time. Indeed, I suggest we do just that, as this topic is so very vital to understanding how funds are appropriated, and ultimately used.

    By Blogger East Ender, at 10:10 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • Thank you, Laura, for giving us a place to discuss! Have a good 'un!
    And yes, we could go on and on about the necessities of following Council's edicts the necessitation of the funding. Government is intricate in its dealings; unlike business it can be more regulated, in some ways.

    By Anonymous $$$$$$$$$, at 11:20 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • Another Storm Water Advisory Committee meeting, Monday Night, 6:15 pm, third floor, City-County Bldg. We are to go over the illicit discharge ordinance we discussed in detail and make sure our recommendations are in there and then look at pre/post construction ordinances. If you know any developers, you may want to tell them they may want to throw their two cents worth in. Hope to see you there. FYI

    By Anonymous Storm Water Advisory Commitee Person, at 11:57 PM, November 10, 2005  

  • the Illicit discharge ordinance has not been discussed in detail yet and as to developers being there, what do you want the ordinances watered down so that they wont have to bear any pollution mitigation expenses?

    By Blogger Tim Deatrick, at 1:04 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • God grant me the serenity, ignore, ignore, ignore... On the wrong blog, Tim. Go write an article for the other ones, okay, with just your spin. This post from you should explain to all taxpayers why they need to attend. Thanks for making my point, but, that is my opinion.

    By Anonymous Storm Water Advisory Committee Person, at 1:08 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • What's the matter, Tim, did you want the meeting held in secret? Or, is it because you didn't get to post it -- which one? How bad can a simple posting be for you to find something wrong with notifying public. Speaks volumes, just the the other posting says. Go tell it on YOUR mountain, far far away, okay. I, personally, (of which I am ALLOWED to feel), have had enough of you and your know-it-all attitude. All of us have things to learn and ways to grow here, but I'm afraid your mindset is you are too above anyone else to even consider that possibility. Go back, please... All taxpayers know you don't pay property taxes; it is a moot issue what you say. That's OUR opinion.
    Suck it up, Tim. We're sticking to issues, and not, SPECIFICALLY NOT, your attacks on anyone trying to do anything for any purpose.
    Construe it as you will.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:14 AM, November 11, 2005  

    EVEN FMSM said that when they telephoned. You are out there.

    Water down the ordinances? We don't have to do that, it's being taken care of for us. Don't lose your mind, what you have left, ok? Maybe you should even go find it. Have you no shame? Never mind, don't answer that question. Does your mother know how you act in public? Someone should really tell her, and about your "thang" about stalking women; verbally abusing and slandering them when YOU don't get your way. Please, give us a break!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:19 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • Sorry, Laura, Tim's crudeness and abusiveness knows no bounds. It's a downright insult to even listen to his idiotic speech aimed only at deterring innocent citizens. Please forgive any outbursts that you may considerate inappropriate. Thanks.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:21 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • Thank you anonymous for the apology as I have been sitting here considering if I should admonish you for stepping on thin ice, or delete the comment at 1:14.
    I know the frustration and anger that Tim can bring on with his know-it-all attitude, but let's be careful not to fall into that trap again. He's not worth it.
    Just leave it to me in the future, and I will remove his infuriating comments.
    I would appreciate it if you could contain the personal remarks. We all know he is unfamiliar with the work the Stormwater Committee has already done.

    By Blogger East Ender, at 1:45 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • Go Tim-inator. These boneheads have no idea what's goin' on!!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:11 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • A note from Patt Roberson.

    When a stormwater disaster hits New Albany, don't call God. When the flood walls burst, don't call GOD. When a tornado goes down Spring Street, don't call GOD. When the New Madrid Fault splits, don't call GOD. This demeaning, shorsighted, ignorant, self serving, inflammatory, worthless, VA political machine, goon squad, GODLESS political action group called the little people has divorced itself from GOD. The fires of HELL await you, little people.



    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:17 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • oh really I am unfamiliar with the work of the storm water committee, wrong. I thoroughly briefed myself and have read the rule 13 statutes from beginning to end.

    How is my comment crude Laura because I call into question the ludicrous statement that we discussed the model ordinance in detail when all we did was briefly review it for the first time, we discussed certain elements of the ordinance and all a certain member could do was talk about Floyd Countys' ordinance.

    Guess we are in for another battle to make you people understnad that storm water pollution is everyones responsibility so go ahead and censor laura because your blog has no credibility and has become the laughing stock of New Albany, now that Roger and I are allies we will take your ignorant positions down daily and belive me you are no intellectual match for eithe of us, 2007 cant come soon enough.

    By Blogger Tim Deatrick, at 7:19 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • When the rapture comes, all the little people will disappear.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:21 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • To Anon 7:17 AKA Patt Robertson

    Dear Patt, The little people are not athiests. We stand and pray the Lord's Prayer at the Council Meetings. Many of us are Christians and church members. When the Rapture comes, the little people will be taken into the air and the athiets will be left behind.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:58 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • As onevoice said,
    Listen to a voice of reason.

    I want my voice also heard. I want to be informed on how these decisions affect me and my family. I as a homeowner want and feel everyone should pay their fair share.

    Many homeowners have put their futures in the investment of their homes. And like myself and my neighbors discuss we feel very unformed.

    With all the additional cost and fees as well as everything else going up. We wonder what additional bad choices or bad mistakes will this Mayor make.

    Their is talk of raising sewer bills, sanitation fees going up, people losing their jobs. Cut backs seem to be every where, and winter is right around the corner.

    The job market out there is nothing to be desired.
    And families like ours are struggling just to get by.

    All the problems in New Albany seem to me is being put on the backs of the homeowners and not anyone else.

    And like myself and others were very upset. There comes a time when enough is enough.

    Thank You
    Speak Out Loud NA

    By Anonymous SHERRY EDWARDS, at 8:54 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • Here's genuine good news. The M. Fine building is going to become a retirement home with 81 units. A building is being used, and jobs created.

    The Main Street group met last night and talked about this and other issues.

    Economic development like this is good for all of us!

    By Anonymous John on Market St, at 9:03 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • Timmy, rather than "jumping" on people and telling them how stupid they are, why don't YOU answer Laura's questions? Oh, and FYI, the news media is aware too, so if you are trying to head off the public coming and watching this Committee in action, your attempts have failed.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:16 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • eastender,

    Right here,Right now! Ready or not,this City sorely needs the Mayor to live up to the expectations of those of us who voted for him. We can't afford to place our hopes and future on mismanagement and bad decisions. And personal agendas at my cost as a taxpayer.
    Where is the Mayors true voice of reason?

    Thank you
    onevoice for a real eyeopener on your article.

    By Anonymous ROBERT MARTIN, at 9:20 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • GODLESS? Isn't it considered a HATE crime talking like that? How dare anyone make that kind of judgement about anyone else. This is truly above and beyond the usual rantings this person does.

    We'll all be judged one day, but I thank my God it won't be by you. And, based upon my teachings, you may wish to look at yourself in the mirrow, because anyone with any decency in them couldn't nor wouldn't utter the words you do.
    Were you out behind the barn when the good Lord passed out humility, honesty, integrity, honor, love, etc.?
    We say the pledge and the Lord's Prayer at meetings; it's the other ones who don't and what every one notices. Take care, you reap what you so.
    Our opinion, as a faith based family. Thanks.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:25 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • Correction: You reap what you sow.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:41 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • 2007? Oh, is that when you plan on ousting the Mayor you use to despise? Got it. Glad you implicated the other parties that are involved. Maybe the Mayor will see the nightmare you are trying to create for him, not us.
    Have a good day.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:43 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • The Mayor and his voice of reason. Use to think he had one, but he has not held to any of his campaign promises made to me and mine. If anything, he has totally violated his promises. Like Politics 101 said, promise 'em anything, just get that VOTE. And, if you think we are really anything more than a VOTE, I think we have a rude awakening coming.
    One day, maybe, we'll have a voice of reason, but I'm not going to hold my breath. Good comments, cos that's how we feel too.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:53 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • AMEN-- PRAISE THE LORD..............

    See JEREMIAH 30: 15-17

    "Therefore, all who devour you shall be devoured; and all your adversaries, every one of them, shall go into captivity; and those who plunder you shall be for plunder, and all those who prey up on you, I shall give for prey."

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:23 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • woo about the M. Fine building!

    By Blogger ceece, at 10:29 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • Thank you, to AMEN, PRAISE THE LORD,

    I thought this quote might help Main Street residents who have problems with speeding cars on Main ST.
    A clergyman suggested these hymns for
    drivers who have the urge to speed.

    At 75 miles per hour:

    At 85 miles per hour:

    At 95 miles per hour:
    Main Street might want to post some
    signs with these warnings.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:40 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • Timmy, Timmy Timmy, whatever will we do with you? You have been warned time and time again. See ya at the meeting all.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:42 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • Eastender,

    You seem to be very concerned with the plight of lower income families in our community and I'm guessing that, because of the work you do, you may have a pretty good handle on the situations that some of those families face.

    Just a suggestion but, instead of concentrating on opinons of past wrongs, why not bring that energy and expertise to the table and focus on how to make the redevelopment process more inclusive of lower income or disenfranchised populations in the future?

    You may already be doing that privately, but given your comments about how changing fees a dollar or two one way or the other won't make much difference, it seems like including suggestions for a more comprehensive approach as part of the public discussion would be valuable to and supportable by a lot of people of various political stripes. People may disagree on specific strategies but the overall goal is one shared by many and certainly worth discussion.

    I, for one, would like to hear/read it.

    Again, just a suggestion, but one I hope you'll consider because I think it could lead to positive results.

    By Blogger bluegill, at 10:50 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Blogger The New Albanian, at 11:18 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • Isn't it a shame Timmy, Timmy, Timmy is such a "wonderboy", but can't get a REAL JOB, and by him not owning his own home and having to participate in these fees, who cares what he thinks? Our opinion.

    Good comments, Bluegill.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:31 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • Don't you all just LOVE how the other blog sights get hardly "any" postings on their comments, so they blog in over here. WE GOT your test post Baylor. Can you hear us? Over and out.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:35 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • Twas reading somewhere someone wanted to explore the options of merging City and County Government. About fell out of my chair.
    1. On where I read it at, I apologize; a blog here in NA is all I can say.
    2. Do they realize there are 3 forms of government locally; City, County and Township. What do you propose to do about Townships?
    3. If the census has changed, of which I don't have, if the County controlled the City, I certainly wouldn't have a problem with it in that respect. I admire the County's leadership; their financial fiscal responsibility; and their services for the people a lot more than I do the City.
    4. But, honestly, I would not wish this CITY's DEBT on my worse enemy, and that's a fact. That would be one way to make everyone in the County pay for this City's spending sprees.
    5. Wonder what would happen if we split back up and were absolved back into the two counties from whence we came? Now, there's a thought. Unfortunately for me, I'd probably be in one I wouldn't want to be in.
    Interesting, hey? An opinion.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:42 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • First, to bluegill-
    I appreciate your comments, and you are very correct about my overall views concerning lower income people and families.
    The neighborhood area that I live and work in includes a wide range of economical households, very similar to the makeup of the entire City.
    My research and demographic studies of multiple sources has painted a very clear picture of where this City stands as a whole.
    As you might notice, if you were to re-read several of my posts and comments, I consistently express the need to revitalize our community in ways that make it a better place for EVERYONE who resides here. By this I mean we must be conciencious and respectful of the various socio-economic classes that make up New Albany.
    I feel many of the folks who push the revitalization of certain areas do so with the clear intent of pushing low-income households out of their neighborhoods.
    I have 'preached' this mantra for the last 5 years, even at City Council meetings, but with very little success in changing the mindsets of those with an "elitist" attitude.
    I'll come back to this conversation after I deal with a few of the other posts put here today.

    By Blogger East Ender, at 11:43 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • Someone needs to go look the word Blasphemy up in the dictionary, and we're not talking digital blasphemy.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:47 AM, November 11, 2005  

  • Regarding the comments from 7:11AM thru 7:21AM.
    It is obvious where these comments have come from... an unstable mind.
    You have crossed the line with these awful remarks. I gave my last warning yesterday.
    I am leaving these comments up because there is a certain someone who needs to see them in context.
    The deleted comments from yesterday will be seen also.
    You and your 'friend' have made a HUGE and costly mistake.
    I will ask that other folks here for resonable discussion ignore these comments, and move on with pertinant conversations about the issues at hand.
    Lastly, as to intelligence, your candle just went out.

    By Blogger East Ender, at 12:13 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • To the Main Street Folks -
    I am sooooo happy to hear that potentially wonderful building is going to be rehabilitated.
    It just begs to be beautiful housing with a view.
    And to know that your efforts are being directed at serving the elderly population is heartwarming.
    I think you guys deserve a thunderous applause.
    Can you hear it? It's happening.
    More housing news will be posted soon.

    By Blogger East Ender, at 12:19 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • Thanks, Laura.
    By the way, did you catch the legal in the Tribune on November 9th about Redevelopment selling/leasing their 27% interest in the White House Building.
    I thought the whole building was up for sale by DNA, but guess I was wrong.
    My thought process wonders why we are doing this;
    How much of the Building is Redevelopment's part (the 27%)?
    The bid also states the bidder has to also demonstrate their ability to improve the property and/or continue it's use as a retail/office centerpiece of DNA. Now what part of the property needs improvements? The elevator?
    Wouldn't it be great if a governmental office could move in down there?
    Clinton passed a law which required no new construction of federal buildings; they were to reoccupy downtown to help out in revitalization of downtowns. That was eliminated under the Patriot Act requiring all buildings to have a buffer zone of "x" amount of feet.
    Just a thought, wondering what's going on. Are they having troubles finding new "incubator" businesses (which is their purpose in life)? We sure would like to open a restaurant, is that an incubator?
    Or, is the White House Center no longer an incubator?
    The legal will be reprinted on November 16th.
    an opinion and question

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:59 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • That's great about the M.Fine bldg. maybe this will start a precedent and other developers will do the same with some of the other abandonded buildings around town.

    By Blogger shirley baird, at 1:00 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • We sure hope so, Shirley. There are some FINE buildings around here to be utilized.
    Main Street has been on the ball for a long time now. Stephen Beardsley had the forethought to create a Historic Preservation Association for the Historical area, which has been a blessing in and of itself. MSPA is not a neighborhood association; people from all over who want to help us maintain the integrity of the mother part of their city can participate. We welcome all historians and people with all ideas.
    What with the old Shirt Factory being restored; with Al Goodman and the Mosier Tannery all shoring up the east end of Main -- the greenway coming in behind Main on down to the Mosier Tanner, which is a spectacular site in and of itself, this group should be applauded. If it wasn't for these individuals, there would be no Historic Preservation Commission for all of the new Historical areas. They also changed zoning to keep old houses from being butchered up into small apartments. Upon sale, you either meet the new minimum square footage requirements or they have to bring it down to single family residence.
    To remove an unsitely dumpster that sat in front of a house for twenty years, residents on Main St worked with the City Council and worked out an ordinance concerning dumpsters and times of trash pickups. Shame you have to get an ordinance in order to get rid of rats, and other rodents plagueing their neighbors, up and down the street. Louisville companies were also coming in the middle of the night emptying dumpsters mostly in commercial areas, around the elderly in nursing homes, etc. The Council passed a law stopping that, because alot of residents had that private service existing in mixed neighborhoods, with neighbors being woken up too.

    Keep up the good works. Some of us are keeping track. You bunch of go getters, you. Saw where the Greenway Funding came through yesterday. YEAH...

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:12 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • In my opinion,

    I feel we should do like onevoice said. Shut all accounts down and only handle the basic needs of the City. From what I understand it will be at least Jan. before we know the results of the budget? I think the City decisions made so far has put us in a hole that we are not going to be able to get out of. But all I hear is spend,spend,spend..I still believe how can they keep moving monies from one account to the other and not put it back? And I truly believe the 2 Million Dollars owed by Georgetown we will never see..And I also believe the monies that was taking from the sewer Dept. Will never be replaced. Things just don't add up.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:14 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • Boy, you got that one right. There are minutes from 1999 I'm going through right now where Council is saying their grandchildren are going to owe these bills, and that was 1999.

    It's GOT TO START AT THE TOP. To me, that is what LEADERSHIP is all about. Tight those belts, do you hear us? Get a reality check. We're broke, and we are in trouble. Let's deal with it, not hide from it. The word is out, everyone knows, there are no secrets. Talk with us, not at us, not to us, WITH us. We are anxiously awaiting answers on these issues.
    Being a person who worked on the Consent Decree when Overton signed it, there were 30 days for taxpayers to respond in order to save their butts. All work was done then to prove the City was working in bad faith and we would not solve these sewer issues in the inner city based on the CAP, or Plan, or, what was the other name (we only have 7 to 8 copies where they kept changing their minds). These actions were not taken against Garner, they happened under the Overton administration, when Garner was Councilman. There are no secrets here. Unfortunately, Garner may be caught in the work done when Overton was Mayor. But, it is not the taxpayers' fault and I wish he would realize that, not take it so gosh durn personally. REAL interesting reading. Available to, if any one is interested, at the Reference Section in the Library -- each monthly report from EMC, the CAP (Capacity Assurance Plan), oh that's right, it became the PER (Preliminary Engineering Report). Fascinating, if you can keep up with the changes. EPA finally had to get them to mark the changes they were making to the books, for their and taxpayers sake.
    A lot of stuff, but I do feel better. Thanks for letting me air my issues today, Laura. Take care.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:30 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • Eastender,

    I've sensed that "elitest" vibe to some extent, too, (and to make clear, it hasn't come from people in the progessive movement) but I think, more than anything, those people just want to rid their neighborhoods of the negative behavior attributed, often unfairly, to low income residents.

    There's a significant ignorance factor on both sides that will undoubtedly be a challenge to overcome, including my own.

    The good news is that we now have at least some people who are choosing to live here (especially in the inner city) based on the idea that socio-economic diversity is a good thing. It's part of what makes city life worthwhile for them.

    The gist of it, as I see it, is to redevelop in a way that continues to make the city more attractive for that demographic while ensuring that low income families (some of whom fall into the above demographic as well) gain or maintain an ability to better their situations as well.

    That's more easily accomplished for low income homeowners, I think, because a steady increase in the worth of their property investment, while not completely without problems, will hopefully provide them some added economic muscle and the opportunities afforded by that.

    It's more difficult for renters. It would be nice if everybody eventually had a university or vocational education, a good job, and owned a house but we're a long way from that. The first step, obviously, is to ensure that the rental property available to them is safe and clean. That helps the renters and the property owners around the rentals.

    The second step is jobs. The redevelopment of downtown, at least at first, will most likely create relatively low-paying service jobs- ones that won't significantly change a person's situtation. If combined with other factors, though, they could make a difference.

    The proximity of those jobs to living quarters alone is beneficial. It's one thing to have a low paying job. It's another to have to commute to it and assume the cost of doing so. If a person could walk or bike (bike lanes, anyone?) to their job, the savings could be substantial. Two income families could comfortably get by with one car- one less loan payment, less insurance, and, assuming they're struggling with making those payments, probably better credit. A constant people presence in the streets would probably help deter some of that negative behavior and reinforce images of positive behavior on the part of low income residents for those who need it.

    One factor that would really help is more affordable child care. I'd love to see a couple of Headstart-type children's facilities developed and supported. It would be nice to have one in every neighborhood but, if you could locate a couple of them to make sure that the majority of residents were within walking or biking distance, then they would still have the transportation benefit on top of the affordable child care and educational opportunities. Even one in the middle of downtown would help.

    Getting rid of two of those major monthly expenses certainly isn't a cure-all, but it could realistically mean a few hundred dollars difference each month for a sizable group of people. Having personally been in situations where $200 might as well have been $2,000, I think that's significant.

    In addition, the presence of a community development bank, which is a hot topic of discussion for many of us, could help translate that extra bit of income into homeownership.


    By Blogger bluegill, at 1:57 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • Here, here on the childcare. The current childcare options around here (with few,very few, exceptions) is horrifying.

    I also agree with the peoples presence on the street's idea. We lived in Silver Hills for a while, and it was exactly that vibe. There were always people out, in their yards, walking, running, just being out visiting.

    It was very comforting.

    By Blogger ceece, at 2:08 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • I wish one of our Elected Officials would have the guts to stand up and say " By God the City" of New Albany is broke! And this is what is really going on. And this is what we have to do...And everyone that is involved should be held accountiable! (I know that's only a pipe dream) Because none of this is adding up. You do not have to have a MBA or any kind of degree to see something is very wrong here. When I have personally heard the Mayor say "I will not make any cuts" concerning the 3RD floor. My reply is BULL-SHIT Mayor! I think like others you start at the top. And lead by example. And I am not seeing example out of them downtown.

    Onevoice is right.

    Park all 70 of the cars. Pull the cell phones at 4PM. Let them drive their own cars home. Since I understand over 50% of police officers live outside the city.

    Can someone tell me actually what my Property Taxes are being used for?

    Thanks onevoice for a real common sense approach.

    By Anonymous TERRI SMELTZ, at 4:01 PM, November 11, 2005  


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4:35 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • SORRY ANON When the rapture comes, all the little people will not disappear.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4:41 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • MSPA Community Brainstorming Workshop tonight 5:00-7:30PM.

    Admiral Bicknell Inn
    600 E. Main St.
    New Albany,Indiana

    Know it will be a total success with Valla Ann Bolovschak leading the project.

    New Albany is your future.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 4:55 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • Effective leadership is what Valla Ann is all about.
    She puts first things first.
    Effective management is her discipline,
    Valla Ann will make the MSPA program a total SUCCESS for all to enjoy.

    Because her last Name is Success!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:23 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • The Admiral Bicknell Inn is one of the most beautiful homes in New Albany. Ms. Bolovschak has done an outstanding job as an Innkeeper. As well as generating new visitors to New Albany. I do hope one day I can stay at New Albany's fines Bed & Breakfast.

    Thank You
    Ms. Bolovschak

    By Anonymous LISA CUMMINGS, at 5:33 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • Could have sworn that MSPA meeting was at the Mosier Tannery, and not the Admiral Bicknell, tonight. Geez, and we have an invite. Wonder which direction the families all went from down here?
    Thanks for telling us, but it's too late. People have already left for Al's.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:51 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • I wanted to Post and thank Laura for her Speak Out Loud NA Blog. It is very full of all kind of information and really enjoy onevoices article. I plan to come back often.


    By Anonymous SHARON NEWTON, at 6:30 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • I saw about this blog in the newspaper. Using it, I have lost 40 lbs and now I can out run my grandkids when they start hitting me up for drug money. Thanks you Laura, and Thanks you Valla Ann.

    By Anonymous Old Mrs. Dingle, at 7:56 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • ONEVOICE - We have talked with our Council members through out the years asking them to pass "ethics" laws. They always told me they didn't exist. I found on the State Level, they do. Clark or Jeff passed a set, also.
    Told this Council this could be one of their most important defining moments in NA's history; they will not touch that with a ten-foot pole - that nor tax abatements. Go figure. Thanks for your comments. Leadership starts at the top, through and by example. If the Boss does it, there must be something to it -- you know, monkey see, monkey doooo. Our opinion. Thanks, Laura for your blog site.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:01 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • Good evening bloggers,
    Rumor is downtown there will be a new blog starting up soon. Seems like to me some people our worried about it. Looks like maybe someone is going to blow the lid off things.
    Any truth to the rumor.

    Dingle you are totally rude.
    Take an issue and keep the cheap shots to yurself.

    Love your blog
    Especially politics 101
    onevoice totally awesome comments

    By Anonymous SUSIE, at 9:47 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • Thanks for the info, Vicki.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:51 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • I don't know anyone downtown, so can't speculate as to who that might be. Whom will it represent? Thanks.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:15 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • Old Mrs. Dingle (Berry?) Tim,
    We do think you have mistaken, and are actually looking for the NA Confidential blog.
    You may consider visiting the library for special reading on Senility 101.
    I don't believe Roger keeps this reference book in stock.
    Have a nice nite, and we hope you find your way to where you really need to be.
    Be sure to hang on to that drug money, you will most likely need it when you get there.

    By Anonymous FEDUPTAXPAYER, at 10:55 PM, November 11, 2005  

  • Give the poor man a break. He's so frustrated, it ain't even funny. We are going to have to start feeling really sorry for this person. Let's pity him, and pray.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:25 AM, November 12, 2005  

  • Hey Laura, Have you checked out the other Blogs lately and their slanderous story telling about you and this Blog? SO outrageous that I had to make copies of everything to send out to.... I can't believe these people actually represent themselves as educated indivduals and insist that they know all the facts and accuse you of not stating any. "All our hard work" Bull C.R.A.P.

    By Anonymous FEDUPTAXPAYER, at 2:00 AM, November 12, 2005  

  • The ONLY SPEAKING OUT LOUD I HEAR IS ON HERE!!!!! :) No comments. One man's voice in the wilderness, without anything to stand upon, much less wipe with, (satirically), of course. Have a good weekend, New Albany. Our opinion.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:55 PM, November 12, 2005  

  • P.S. That's why they're posting here.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 5:56 PM, November 12, 2005  

  • Terri, No, you don't have to have an MBA to smell or tell what is wrong with the city. Leadership does start at the top, and I too, would like to hear ONE of them say what you said. Thanks for your comments; our family feels the same way, and we are looking for that person. Hang in there, and keep the faith. Good always overcomes EVIL. We'll find someone. I have my faith. Take care. Our opinion.

    By Anonymous $$$$$$$$$$$, at 2:32 AM, November 13, 2005  

  • Valla Ann

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:40 PM, November 20, 2005  

  • onevoice,

    Thank You for your honest suggestions.
    And a well written article.
    Hope you have alot more to say in the future.

    By Anonymous KATHY MORGAN, at 6:28 PM, November 24, 2005  

  • onevoice,

    Love your new blog-Freedom of Speech.
    Your article says it all for our entire family.

    Thank you

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:14 AM, December 10, 2005  

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