dunnuck

Saturday rambling: Filing for election

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voting imageThe deadline for filing ended on Friday.  One surprise, Democrat James King filed on the Republican ticket.  He switched parties and the Republican chair, Will Statom, gave the blessing.  Last year, Stephen Smith with a record of Democrat voting, asked to be placed on the Republican ballot for mayor.  Will Statom said no.

Not surprising is a candidate, Traci Allbee, who has been a fixture in past elections.  She has no intention of campaigning or even serving the public.  Her sole purpose is to garner votes in hopes to keep a candidate the party despises from making it through the primaries.

Every election, it’s the same old song and dance.  Most are what we call “ringers” or “ghost candidates”.  To keep things interesting, the tactics are changed slightly.  Like the 2010 primaries when the Democrats filled the Republican spots with their very own candidates.

Delaware County Voting Polls Are Haunted! (click here)

The Republicans beat the Democrats at their own game by filling nearly every spot with their candidates.  “Foul!” the DHQ cried.  That’s funny, I don’t care who you are.

In 2011, Nora Powell filed with her maiden name and showed on the ballot as Nora “Evans” Powell.  Again in 2015, she pulled out her maiden name to be listed at the top of the ballot, reverting back to Powell after the elections.

So, you say?

2011 saw another candidate who filed with her maiden name.  Unfortunately, not being  chosen by the DHQ elite, she was subjected to all manner of scrutinization.   Nora was not held to the same standard.

Of course, Powell is not a “ringer” candidate by any means.  Just one who hopes to cash in on the 7% of voters known to select the first name on the ballot.  2015 saw “ghost” candidates in an unsuccessful effort to unseat the popular Linda Gregory.

Let’s go back to 2008 when the Democrats were successful in removing an elected official by placing a “ringer” on the ballot.   Bilbrey comes before Brooke.  Bilbrey received 6,000 votes and never campaigned.  DHQ was successful in getting Brooke out and their man Dunnuck in by employing the “ghost candidate” ungolden rule.  Sidenote:  Bilbrey later sued Mayor Dennis Tyler.  Don’t know the outcome.

In addition, just a few months prior to the November ’08 election, the Democrat Headquarters went on a campaign to get Vote Centers instituted.  The Republicans were not against Vote Centers.  Just the timing and the implementation was close to the election date.

Democrats, of course, making it a political football claiming it was an effort to suppress the vote.  Funny thing, after the election, with a Democrat Clerk and a Democrat-controlled election board, they never made any move to implement Vote Centers again.

Democrats as well as Republican are successful in inciting emotional outrage where none exists as well as claiming the Voter ID law limits voters.  You need an ID to cash a check.  Surely an election should fall under the same scrutiny.  Based on unknown candidate Bilbrey’s 6,000 votes, not sure elections and its process all that important.

Simply put, placing fake candidates on the ballot is a covert manipulation of your vote.  Sincerely hope people recognize it as such and just say no.

Gotta go…see you all when I see you all…

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Saturday Rambling – A few days Late

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no more rumors 3The rumor has finally been put to rest.  Did the City of Muncie Building Commissioner, Craig Nichols, get the remodeling contracts for the City of Muncie’s City Hall?  This very rumor had been circulating for months, and finally a rumor that has truth attached.  Yep, folks, he got it.  In fact, other city projects, you know, the ones that have received city as well as State  tax dollars may have his company written all over it.

Unfortunately, we won’t know how much his company made.  That’s private.

Mr. Nichols signed a conflict of interest disclosure, so everything is O.K.  I wonder,  the person responsible for the construction code, as in the position of Building Commissioner,  will cite his own company for violations?  Or will it just be disguised as a change order, and payment submitted so the Advanced Walls & Ceilings won’t lose any money?  I don’t believe the Board of Public Works will even consider questioning any bills from Mr. Nichols, the Building Commissioner a/k/a owner of Advanced Walls & Ceilings.

Advanced Walls and Ceilings Indiana Secretary of State information

Just last year, the attorney for Muncie Sanitary District, Mike Quirk, started a business and began collecting payment for services rendered.  His business was filed with the State of Indiana several months later.  As with Mr. Nichols, we have no idea if this is saving us money or costing us money.   SOS

However, there is a bit of history which can help you determine if this is beneficial.

The County purchased a truck from a county’s highway employee’s son.  Cash for Clunkers, Delaware County Style.   I’m glad as a taxpayer, we could help a poor fella out of his upside down truck loan.

The county dog catcher resigned after the County animal control truck was stolen by a drunk neighbor.   The ex-dog catcher later received a contract to roof a county building.  The contract was rescinded and he threatened to sue the county.  But, never fear, the City of Muncie, saved the day.  How, you ask?  Simple.  Fire a company that did building debris clean-up and hire the ex-dog catcher.  Problem solved.

Remember the rumor the previous mayor would fire anyone that disagreed with her? MITS board member, Karl Kizer, felt it first hand.  25 years on the board, well-respected and knowledgeable had the audacity to question the mayor.  Out he went.  Oh, this was done by the current mayor.

Does anyone remember Culpepper insurance?  If you don’t, being a big Democrat party supporter, the commissioners hired the company to take care of the county’s insurance.  Boy did he, as costs skyrocketed out of control.  2003 mayoral candidate Dennis Tyler said there was no place for Culpepper in his administration.  Tyler won in 2011 and take a guess who showed up to offer us insurance?  No word if he saved us money on our liability policy.

We take care of our own here.  We’re loyal like that.

What a fiasco when the commissioners tried to pass an ordinance limiting the area that Center Township  Fire could service.  Kind of like if your house is located in Muncie but closer to CTFD station, they were not allowed to go put the fire out.  Oops, some 911 calls got misrouted, too.

Friendships and loyalty run deep here.  In fact, it is the backbone of our very existence.  Take for example, when the Democrat Chair was being indicted for forging papers to remove a candidate from the ballot.  The chair, Phil Nichols, resigned and appointed Dennis Tyler, the  now current mayor.  Mr Tyler then appointed Phil Nichols to the election board.  Let nothing like an indictment stand in the way of a friendship.

Time doesn’t allow for everything in complete detail, as that would really take a book.  But consider these things:

The Fair Board ordinance requires an even number of members from both parties.  This didn’t happen so solving the problem was simply rewrite the ordinances to match the appointments.

The Justice Center which was filled to the brim with party favorites, made national news and cost a pretty penny for the taxpayers.

Royerton Sewer, again a board filled with wives of party members, cost the taxpayers some dough.  And it hasn’t stopped costing the residents.

Sigh….

Public Question and Delaware County 2012 Ballot

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Public question: Shall Delaware County, Indiana and City of Muncie, Indiana, reorganize as a single political subdivision?

Supporting consolidation and modernization, vote Yes.

So, here we are at the brink of voting for reorganization and modernization in our county.  After nearly five years, it’s on the ballot.

You might be asking, why do I support consolidation?  I believe it will usher in a smaller and more transparent government.  Currently, there are 47 separate taxing entities in the county.  Most can’t recite even four.  I can’t.  Nevertheless, we have on the table a plan for reorganization.

To give you a little background.  The reorganization began in 2007, when a group of citizens garnered over 2200 signatures to get the ball rolling.  From there it was voted up, voted down, board disbanded and new appointments made, until the finished plan was completed in 2010.  From there it sat gathering dust for nearly a year, as neither Muncie City Council or Delaware County Commissioners bothered to meet and modify the plan.  One wonders if they even read the plan.   I know members of City Council were asked their thoughts on the reorganization, and they sat  looking blankly at the citizen.  Where’s the Democrat handlers when you need them?

Finally, Linda Gregory spoke and defined the plan perfectly.  She would as she spent time explaining the plan to citizens at her monthly meetings.

But today, we have a wealth of misinformation being circulated by those that have never even bothered to read the plan.  You ask how I know this?  I’ve been out and about listening to people explain why they are voting No.  So, I wonder, are these elected people ignorant of the plan or does their agenda include spreading as much false information as possible?  Don’t know.  Either way, it does the citizens a disservice.

To make it fun, let’s discuss some of the things being said.

“Public safety is in danger and we won’t have a sheriff.”  No, public safety won’t change.  Muncie will still have MPD and the County will still have Sheriff Department   The sheriff position is in the constitution, so this position is here to stay.

“Dennis Tyler will control the county.”  No, the mayor position will be eliminated and Dennis Tyler isn’t qualified to be the county executive.

“Your taxes will go up.”   That may be a possibility and really has nothing to do with reorganization.  Remember, your property is capped, so you do have a level of insurance.

“They just want to get rid of the elected officials.”  I’m not sure who “they” may be.  Consider this, the reorganization began in 2007 and there has been a turn over of elected officials.  Realizing the comment lacked credibility, it was continued to single out along-time city council member.  Yep, we spend all our time on modernization and consolidation to rid ourselves of Mary Jo Barton?

Some of the reasons are comical, as the Barton one, some are serious accusations with no basis in fact.  I would suggest you read the plan, if you haven’t already and decide for yourself.

I’ll leave you with this opinion piece from the local newspaper.

Learning from Nashville Experience

Vote Yes For Reorganization

Dis-FUNctional – Are we having fun in Delaware County or what!

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Delaware County is so political, it takes the fun out of being dis-FUNctional.  It  doesn’t matter what the topic, or flavor of the day,  it’s political.  Payback can be good or a detriment, depending on what side of the “dis-FUNction” you sit, stand or walk on.  Sometimes you get a job, or your truck paid off or even a construction contract.

Case in point.  The Muncie Sanitary District and Mayor Dennis Tyler.   Mayor Tyler claimed at the mayoral debate, he was able to work across party lines, he just can’t seem to do it.  Supporters of the mayor never said a word about Economic Development Income Tax funds going to pay for a law firm just so Mayor Tyler can gain the last bit of control over the $168 million dollar storm-water project.  So, the political games continue and the taxpayers and citizens will be forking over more money.  That’s the way it has always worked.

First we had the Justice Center, talk about the political football!

With the political appointments made to the Board of Supervisors (BOS) was filled to over-flowing with party supporters.  By the time it was all said and done, Delaware County was on the hook for additional bonds (covering the cost overruns), purchased a boat-load of  Bull computers…and even got to pay for storage of the dis-FUNctional pieces of modern technology and a lawsuit in which one attorney lost his license to practice.  The County Commissioners, even gave the poor unemployed attorney a pass on his fines.  Later he won his appeal on a technicality getting his license reinstated.  Witnesses for the prosecution were placed in the same room…that’s a no-no.  He was good to go.

We made national news on that one.  Along with the lady who shot her toe off because she had a corn.  No, I’m not making this stuff up.

Are we having fun yet? Read the rest of this entry »

Somewhere over the rainbow…

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Coming up Wednesday May 30, 2012, there will be a special meeting of Delaware County Council.  Some of the topics and decisions to be had will be, returning the pay and hours back for the county workers,  bond issues and amending the salary ordinance.

Some of you may remember last fall when Delaware County  voted to close the County Building on Friday and decrease the pay by three hours as a cost saving measure.  I haven’t heard the savings and one wonders if the county has suddenly found itself solvent since last year. Read the rest of this entry »

Muncie Indiana – What’s happening in our city?

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O.K. I’ll make this brief. Just how much has the spending or wish list amounted to so far?

April the estimated spending (based upon newspaper articles) according to the figures was $1,490,450.00. Included in that figure was the cost of Mock Station, Downtown Development, Community organizations, Roberts Hotel, etc. Well, I was off a few bucks.

Mayor Dennis Tyler released his EDIT spending and the figure came in at $1,536,507.00 a difference of $46,057. 00. The spending plan differed slightly from the earlier newspaper articles, but really, who cares?

Next on the agenda is the purchase of a fire truck at $879,647 pending approval of City Council. We purchased new trucks less than three years ago and acquired Center Township’s well-oiled and maintained fleet.

Read the rest of this entry »

It’s only money…Delaware County, Indiana

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For those of us which have been following Delaware County finances and government for the past few years,  it has been one financial disaster after another.

At the end of 2009,  Delaware County Treasurer, John Dorer, stood before County Council unable to borrow $10.5 million dollars to stay out of the red.  Eventually, the county found three separate institutions to loan us the money.  This  same year Delaware County  received a windfall of $8 million dollars from the Welfare levy.    The bond rating for our county dropped resulting in a higher interest rate on borrowing.

In 2009, Larry Bledsoe , County Commissioner, contacted Jake Dunnuck, Drainage Board attorney, requesting Dunnuck obtain a ruling from the State of Indiana on then current surveyor’s practice of awarding contracts without bids, formal quotes or plans. Contracts were awarded to the surveyor’s stepson who was the deputy chief in the surveyor’s office.

No response from Jake Dunnuck.

Bledsoe brought to the attention of commissioner Todd Donati the county watershed funds were depleted and running in the red.  Bledsoe wanted a resolution and said he would not sign off on any future spending.  Commissioner Todd Donati turning his back on Bledsoe  promised he would sign off if Bledsoe didn’t.    A complaint was filed with the Attorney General by  Bledsoe.  Greg Zoeller responded the matter needed to go before the county attorney, Mike Quirk.  Read the rest of this entry »