Monday, August 26, 2013

Ballard Wants More of Your Money (Again)

SEA 621 gives Ballard unprecedented budget power
no Mayor of Indianapolis has ever had
So, last Monday, a funny thing happened.  Mayor Greg Ballard delivered his budget proposal to the City-County Council.

Now, you may be thinking, what was so funny about that?  Nothing.  Nothing was funny.  Perhaps peculiar would be the better term.  You see, the man who ran for office in 2007 saying he wouldn't ask for any more of your money...asked for more of your money again.  It isn't the first time, either.

Mayor Ballard's budget will bring more hefty cuts for other elected officials like the Prosecutor and the Sheriff.  It also would raise the property taxes of the vast majority of Marion County residents and reduce the amount of money public schools will receive by eliminating the homestead tax credit.  Yep, it's official.  The Greg Ballard that ran for Mayor in 2007 would definitely ask if we've had enough of Mayor Greg Ballard.

With the turmoil now on the City-County Council, it will be interesting to see where the debate goes.  Luckily, there are some Republicans who seem to be paying attention and who aren't afraid to buck their Mayor when his policies would hurt the residents of Marion County.

Then, on top of everything, you have brand new Senate Enrolled Act 621 which pretty much gives the Mayor unilateral power over the budget because no matter how it is set up by the Council, the Mayor and his unelected Controller are in charge of allocating budget funds.

Lots of reasons for residents of Marion County to be engaged in this process.  When it comes to analyzing the budget, there's no one that does it better than my friend Pat Andrews over at the Had Enough Indy Blog.  I urge you to make her blog a regular reading stop as the budget starts to unfold.

Keep your eyes and ears open for the next few months!

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