Monday, April 16, 2007

Mayor's office embarasses itself

Please read this article in today's JG:

I am so mad that I had to go and take a walk...

The City has been working on this deal since December. They THINK they will finalize their "Memorandums of Understanding" TODAY.

They want City Council to vote on this issue TOMORROW.

Early on in this project I expressed my opinion that The Mayor would be trying to "ram this down our throats" without time for a public review of the financing.

I was right, and in fact, it is worse then I thought.

Anyone who wants to review the entire package will have to peruse a couple hundred pages and several different reports... This will take a couple of weeks.

They are giving us less then 24 hours.

What a slap in the face to the citizens of Fort Wayne.

Kevin Knuth must be livid... Kevin Knuth talks about open government a lot. I am sure that Kevin remembers that the Mayor personally promised me that I could review the entire financial proposal and that I would have time to ask questions BEFORE this issue was voted on by City Council. Pat Roller, the City Controller, made a similar promise.

I have contacted both the Mayor's office and Pat Roller's office several times; yet, I hear nothing back. The silence is deafening...

It is a shameful day for Fort Wayne and the Mayor's Office has "slapped us all in the face." This is a "black eye" for the Mayors office and for open Government...

Mike Sylvester

P.S. Kevin Knuth will be proud, I am filing a bunch of Freedom of Information Requests today. I can promise you this, Fort Wayne is going to give me the information that they are required to by law!


Scott Greider said...

Did you take a walk and then write that, or did you write it before taking that walk? If the latter, you should have taken a longer one. Easy there, big fella...


LP Mike Sylvester said...

That was after the walk, now I am sitting and my desk and wiritng Freedom of Infomration Requests...

The Mayor's office is wrong on many levels about this!

Mike Sylvester

Scott Greider said...

And I thought you were going to take it easy after tax season. Silly me.

Anonymous said...

umm...the article says the final vote would be the 24th at the earliest

LP Mike Sylvester said...

Ever so brave anonymous:

Right and they want to have the initial vote before the details are released to the Public...


Mike Sylvester

Jeff Pruitt said...

Don't kid yourself anonymous -the preliminary votes are almost always the same as the final vote.
The administration appears to be hoping that if they get a favorable preliminary vote then the citizens will be discouraged enough not to review the documents and contact their councilmen.

Kevin Knuth said...

A preliminary vote is just that- preliminary. The only vote that counts will be no earlier than the 24th.

Mike, your issue with the vote is NOT with Mayor's office- it is with council.

LP Mike Sylvester said...

Kevin Knuth:

You are as wrong as you can be on this.

My issue is with the Mayor, The Deputy Mayor, and The City Controller. They made promises that information would be made available to the public before the issue is brought to the City Council.

I believed that promise.

I have learned from my mistake. I will not believe the promise next time Kevin.

I have filed a series of Freedom of Information Requests with Fort Wayne so that now they have to provide me the information they promised to provide the public.

All City Councilmen regardless of political affiliation should vote against this being brought to an initial vote until all information is provided to the public and all questions are answered...

Mike Sylvester

Angry White Boy said...

Kevin, as you well know and as Jeff pointed out preliminary votes and final votes match nearly 100% of the time. Anyone attend Peters' press conference at Memorial Stadium today?

This just in, Mike go here and look at this City releases details of initial Harrison Square agreements.

Tim Zank said...

Good, Bad, or Indifferent, it sounds like we're gonna hear "PLAY BALL!".

Frederick said...


Take a breath. There.

Look is anyone surprised? The Mayor has everything to lose if this goes down, so he is pressing.

Peters has had his own poll in the field for the last week and had a phone bank operating from a local real estate office pulsing the people on this issue. He probably got the results back and, oh my, Zogby was right, the people really don't like the Harrison Square project, particularly the ballpark.

Good to see Peters has finally come around to the Kelty position. You have to learn to follow if you are ever going to lead, and he must be learning a lot because all he's been doing is following Kelty for the last 5-months.

Kelty has shown leadership on this issue since last Thanksgiving. His release of the Zogby poll data crystalized the issue and moved Peters to finally consider the will of the people, though he says he is not against the project. Had the Zogby data not been released, the $45,000 study by Minnesota-based CSL International, hired in January by the city, county and Indiana-Purdue University to assess alternative uses for the county-owned Memorial Stadium, would have never been released before the vote by City Council.

But me thinks Mr. Peters needs a civics lesson, you see, there is already a referendum planned, on May 8th, it's called an election. The best term limit there is, but you have to vote for it to work.

I know Mr. Peters is envious of all things Indianapolis, but it is really unnecessary to exercise his Indy campaign staff (Borror and Long)to feign concern and influence, and interfere with what is clearly a City Council matter. If I didn't know better, I'd say the whole act is a deal to bail out the City Council from having to make a tough decision on Harrison Square. Everyone on the Council should be squawking about local rule, and being left alone to do their job. But I think they are thankful to have wriggled off the hook. Spines of butter.

Let me call the next play from the status quo playbook. Tommorrow, after being presented with the City's proposal for Harrison Square, the City Council (many Peters supporters) will cite his wisdom, leadership and influence on the matter, and defer the vote on Harrison Square pending a response from the Indy oracles.

City Council survives the primary, Peters is a cardboard cutout of a wise, influential leader, and the people dodge a $160M dollar bullet, for now.

But let there be no mistake, the leadership, wisdom, and influence award should go to Matt Kelty, who stuck his neck out on this issue because he listened to the majority of people in Fort Wayne months ago, acted, and took the adminsitration, City Council and Nelson Peters out of their game plan to steamroll the people of Fort Wayne with the Harrison Square project.

The paper called Mayor Richard courageous for promoting Harrison Square and going against the will of the people. How much courage does it take to spend other people's money on a bad deal, then skip town.

Leadership is leading the charge against Harrison Square for the people of Fort Wayne, and courage is doing it in the face overwhelming odds aginst the machine politics of the City, and County political organizations. Kelty gets my vote.

But it's not over. Every citizen needs to personally call their City Council Representative and ask them 2 questions:

1. Given what you know of the City's Harrison Square proposal, if put to a vote today are you for or against the project?

2. Do you believe a City administration should be held accountable for the execution of the Harrison Square project? If so, would you vote to postpone a decision on Harrison Square until a new administration is in place after the fall general election?

Based on their answers, vote accordingly in both the primary and general elections. That's a referendum Nelson.

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