McCarthy: Not Your Father’s Indy Star
THE INDIANAPOLIS print media occasionally gives us a glimpse into the positions of the two mayoral candidates by relating “interviews” with, or statements by, the two men. Frankly, I’ve been disappointed by what I’ve read so far.
The media is humbly asked to bring more subjects into the public conversation. Specifically, I would like to see the following questions asked — with straightforward answers demanded.
1. With a high priority indicated, you both promised a significant increase in police officers. We don’t recall any statement as to how you expect to finance this action.
Q — Considering the history of the promise of more police officers, I hope you’ll forgive my cynicism in asking how you will pay for it?
2. The Food and Beverage Tax was enacted to pay for the construction of the RCA Dome (once the Hoosier Dome). After more than two decades of collecting that tax, through the terms of mayors of both parties, and as the building was being destroyed, we were informed that we still owed the full amount of that debt.
Q — Will you find out what happened to 20-plus years of tax revenue that was supposed to have paid this debt? Will you investigate the possibility of malfeasance?
3. History has shown a predilection in Indianapolis for mandatory taxpayer financial support of private, for-profit corporations in the entertainment business.
Q — Will you support the proposal of a taxpayer-funded soccer stadium, downtown or otherwise? Will you continue the annual gift of $16 million for the basketball team? Would you consider proposing an “adjustment” of the contract with the football team to the advantage of the taxpayer?
4. Hundreds of millions of dollars have been committed for downtown real-estate development projects, most of which have somehow demanded the assistance of public monies.
Q — Do you favor continued use of tax abatements, loans, grants and the expansion of the tax increment financing (TIF) approach to these programs? In other words, will you seriously probe the current investment (expenditure, waste) of public revenues before suggesting (proposing, demanding) new or increased taxation?
— Fred McCarthy