Sunday, January 9, 2011

Reneged Township Library Deal Could Signal Interesting Times Ahead in Wayne Twp

On his way out the door, former Wayne Township Trustee David King Baird passed a deal through the Wayne Township Advisory Board to utilize $200,000 in surplus funds to restore hours to some popular Wayne library branches that had been cut due to budget shortages. It was an 11th hour deal for Baird that was praised by many.

Well, hold the phone just a second.

New Wayne Township Trustee Andy Harris has decided to play Chris Christie and renege on the deal. He is not authorizing the funds transfer, and he is asking the Township Board to revisit the issue, according to an Indianapolis Star report. Harris told the Star that Baird could have signed off on the deal before he left office, but he did not. The "interlocal" deal was passed by the tally of 6-1 by the board, but Harris told the Star that he doesn't believe it lives up to the statutory requirements of township government.

This could just be the first of many battles between Harris, a Republican, and his Township Advisory Board which is dominated by Democrats. Harris is a former Ballard Administration official and longtime city and county official in many capacities. Needless to say, the battle lines may soon be drawn.

I know Andy Harris, and I believe he is a competent public official (even if he is a Republican). There are some good people also on the Township Advisory Board, and I know many of them. The question will be, can these two entities work together? It's going to be a test of township government and a very interesting dynamic to watch.


Had Enough Indy? said...

This is interest, for sure. I wonder who has the authority to enter into an interlocal agreement - the Board or the Trustee with the approval of the Board.

Also, since Andy seems to think that state law frowns on interlocal agreements, was he opposed to the transfer of $8m in property taxes from the downtown TIF through the CIB to the Pacers. That was achieved through an interlocal agreement.

Bill said...

Harris ony does what ever Dave Brooks tells him to do.Would you expect anything else?

Brooks is is main man and does all of the legal work for Harris.So there ya go. Yes Harris is a good man,when he is able to think on his own,but as we all know,no Republican is allowed to think on his own,they serve at Dave Brooks pleasure.Interesting that Brooks runs Marion County and lives in Carmel.