Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Ballard Raises Slap Public Safety in Face

"Public safety is job one" has long been a campaign slogan for Greg Ballard, but, after news broke a few days ago that Ballard has been giving his top aides big raises, you just wonder where Public Safety now sits on his list of priorities.  

Mayor Greg Ballard
After all, it is Mayor Ballard that is presiding over a city that has a Department of Public Safety that's deep in the red.  Despite plans to the contrary, Ballard has also stopped growing IMPD and our police force is the smallest it's been in years.  Couple this with all the other news of more budget cuts for things like parks, and you wonder just where the priorities are.

Wherever they went, it's clear that the priority of this administration has changed.  No longer is public safety job one in Indianapolis. It has become just an empty Greg Ballard promise.  Now, in his second term, Ballard is looking out for his own folks, it seems, rather than the rest of us.

To be fair, the Ballard Administration claims that it paid for the raises by just not replacing open positions.  That's great.  That money should have gone to public safety first before going to raises, in my view.  Don't forget, the Mayor put the yoke of public safety right back on his own shoulders.  When he was elected, it was the Sheriff that controlled public safety in Indianapolis.  Ballard worked a deal, and he got it back from Frank Anderson.  Now, he's handing out raises to his own before he takes care of this city's public safety needs.

Something just doesn't seem right about that.


Had Enough Indy? said...

There is a prime question not yet answered. For how long have those 'open positions' been unfilled.

During budget time, many departments and agencies say they have cut back by not filling open positions. The budget drops but the number of jobs remain the same - creating a shell game.

In one article I read, someone from the Mayor's office said they used money earmarked for professional services, which would require Council approval.

It is still unclear, at least to me, how they actually paid for these raises.

Anonymous said...

Part of the rationale for raising the county option tax for Marion County to 1.65% was to shore up public safety. That tax increase was instrumental in the demise of Petersen. Ballard made a campaign promise to rescind that tax increase and of course he did not roll back that tax.

Around the same time the state took over a portion of the police and fire pensions thus freeing up millions of dollars in the budget.

So we have a tax increase and a state subsidy of pensions and yet we now have a projected 50-60 million dollar shortfall in the budget!

So where did all of the money go?