Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Ballard Withdraws $6.8 Million from IMPD General Fund Without Authorization

Mayor Greg Ballard
While we were all waiting for the First Church of Cannabis to take its first toke, Mayor Greg Ballard walked out with $6.8 million of IMPD's General Fund.

That's what City-County Council President Maggie Lewis said in a news release yesterday. President Lewis said:

"Very recently I was informed that Mayor Ballard unilaterally authorized a withdraw of $6.8 million dollars out of the IMPD general fund without consultation or approval from the Council. This is not how good municipal government works. The Council recently overrode the Mayor's veto to add appropriations to fund critically needed pursuit rated vehicles and necessary upgrades to IMPD facilities. His decision means many IMPD officers will continue to operate substandard vehicles and train at outdated facilities. We have too few officers on the street to begin with and this action by the administration may put at risk the city's ability to fund this Fall's final recruit class of 2015. I call on the Mayor to immediately reverse course and follow both the letter and spirit of Indiana law by returning the money to IMPD now."

For a Mayor who has always said, "Public safety is job one," he does a good job of showing otherwise.

This is the sort of mess created by 2013's SEA 621 that redefined the Mayor's role in the budget and lessened the Council's role as a watchdog.  I read the statute closely, though, and I don't think it said the Mayor could  just take $6.8 million from IMPD for no reason and without any notification or justification.

Where did the money go, Mr. Mayor?  Are you using IMPD to get back at the Council for overriding your veto?

When questioned, Mayor Ballard always likes to say, "Show some respect!"

Show some respect for the taxpayers and your officers and tell us where did IMPD's money go?  Inquiring minds want to know.

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