IS IT TRUE? December 10, 2011


The Mole #??

IS IT TRUE? December 10, 2011

IS IT TRUE that we are beginning to hear reports of encouragement from one City Council member to another that it is time to “GO WITH THE FLOW” and get on board with ziplining the recommendation of the Evansville Redevelopment Commission to fund the Kunkel Group to move forward post haste in getting the public money committed to stick that first shovel in the ground at the corner of MLK and Walnut?…that this “friendly” advice started a couple of weeks before last Tuesday’s announcement of the ERC’s recommendation?…that it has even been said that the real driving force behind shoving this through quickly is local organized labor?…that local labor need not fear who is the eventual builder of the downtown Convention Hotel because the RFP had a provision in it that requires the builder to sign a Project Labor Agreement so the local trade unions will get all of this work no matter whether Kunkel, Prime, or some future entrant to the mix gets this deal?…that local labor won the day the RFP was written anyway so it would be best to do the right thing all around with the taxpayer’s money?

IS IT TRUE that digging a bit deeper into the expressed reservations of Sara Miller who cast a NO VOTE and making the details of her objections to going forward is a task worth doing before calling for a funding vote?…that we think that everyone from the CEO of the CVB right down to the lowest paid workers at The Centre understand that downtown Evansville needs this hotel to compete for conventions?…that most people also understand that the Ford Center will be fine without a hotel as Roberts Stadium was for over 50 years?…that if there is to be a prosperous and tasteful downtown Convention Hotel that he time to set that platform into place is right now?…that even if the determination is that Sara Miller is right and that this needs to start over that the prosperity of10 years from now is dependent on getting this right and that Ms. Miller has made some very valid points?

IS IT TRUE that City Councilman John Friend, CPA is the right person to head a discovery committee to prepare a recommendation for the City Council when this comes to a vote?…that releasing the Hunden findings are a key place to start this discovery?…that for the ERC, the DMD, and the Weinzapfel Administration to keep these findings secret is the financial equivalent of withholding evidence or obstruction justice?…that if those findings reflect well on the ERC decision and if Councilman Friend’s discovery create a glowing report that the funding proposal should sail through the City Council with a 9 – 0 vote and the shovel can hit the earth?…that if the Hunden findings and Councilman Friend’s discovery do not reflect well on the ERC recommendation that it is time to start the RFP process over again and that the Winnecke Administration is the group to do it?

IS IT TRUE that there is a wonderfully correct bumper sticker that was seen on this writer’s recent trip to the left coast that simply stated “California, ITS ALL TRUE”?…that it is good to be back even if it is 50 degrees colder?…that missing out on the ERC meeting this week after having written so much about valuation, the prospects for financing, and the convalescent home for pigeons actually stung a little?

IS IT TRUE that there has always been a little piece of this writer’s mind that hoped that the obstacles with the McCurdy would be overcome in spite of the clusteryouknowwhat that the project was but that now it is time to turn the page and get on about finding something that is both positive and achievable for that block?…that without regard to bought and paid for appraisals, Hunden findings, or opinions of the last days of the administration that this guy stands by the previous analysis that at the end of the day the market value (not to be confused with construction cost) of the downtown Convention Hotel as proposed is between $18M and $22M inclusive of everything?…that Fort Wayne understood this but Evansville does not seem to get it?…that when a financial incentive package is put together to relieve the builder/operator of any obligation higher than that we may actually have a project with a business model that will yield prosperity?…that this guy gives a big thumbs up to Sara Miller for taking the stand that she did and hopes to see a working business model come forth in the future?…that this is not about WHO, this financial reality is about HOW?


  1. Seems to me the CCO editorial staff and their handful of nattering bloggers should band together and form a vetting consortium to ensure all our local projects are let to contractors capable of 100% failsafe performance. Of course as with all free advice, we likely would get what we pay for from such a gaggle of armchair consultants.

    • I just returned from California where I was involved in vetting and designing a project with a bigger budget and a higher potential impact that the hotel. I assure you the advice that was given was not free nor was it biased. You may be surprised at the financial talent that the “gaggle of armchair consultants” could offer if the powers that be had the fortitude to listen to financial reality. Biscuit and Beerguy who post here have some credentials that are superior to at least four of the ERC and a super majority of the City Council. No project has a 100% probability of success. Prior to going forward on any project it is responsible to know that the probability exceeds 90% through proper vetting, public disclosure, and simple sanity tests.

      • Well, here is my take on it, although it’s just a well conceived political opinion. It matters not one dot or diddle how professional, experienced, talented, or valuable anyone associated with the CCO whether by employment or participation in the blogs, the “powers that be” wouldn’t employ, contract or consult any of you (with the possible exception of Jack and waitamin).

        Why? Because you long ago poisoned that oasis. And more than that, what you do on a daily basis just reinforces any city administration inclination to continue going outside Evansville for consultants and certain professional department heads, if for no other reason than to avoid the poisoned pool.

        • I think we long understood that you and your cronies believe that you’re the only ones capable of running Evansville’s government. What I don’t understand is how does your group plan on keeping the CCO and its “bloggers” out of government? I mean are you going to ask everyone you hire if they have a screen name on here? You don’t know me nor any of the other posters on here yet you threaten to keep us out of our government. I call B.S.

          • There you go with typical paranoid theory! Exactly proves my point. Look, I’m not in a position to keep you out of government, and I don’t even care who you are. I was just making an observation and stating my opinion about how things are and have been over a period of many years. For example, how long did two of the editors remain in appointed positions in recent administrations?

          • No you specifically said the CCO and its bloggers poisoned the Oasis long ago and will be singled out yet you have admitted you know none of us. We all know that Jack Waldroup would eat a snickers bar out of the Ohio River if it meant the dems would continue to think he’s worth something even though he’s just running off of daddy’s work. The rest of us non-dems have no use for your frat party but you will never know whose on your side and who isn’t.

          • You obviously either have no ability to comprehend English, or intentionally twist other people’s words. Start at the top, and read again, slowly this time. Try to digest each sentence before moving on to the next.

          • You can say what you want to say but you and your dem buddy Jack Waldroup couldn’t hold Wallace, Biscuit, and Beerguy’s jock straps unless of course you were looking for more snicker bars.

        • If what you are saying is that Evansville people seem to treat other Evansville people as thought they all have an IQ below 80 then I regretfully must agree with you that that is how locals treat each other. The CCO did not poison the water. The water has so to speak been poisoned for at least half a century and the CCO has only been around for 3 or 4 years and has only been publishing daily for a year or so. Evansville was never an oasis my friend, but it was better than it is now.

          • Evansville has been a job oasis for the tri-state for a long, long time. Yes, Evansville government seems addicted to hiring non-local consultants and certain key department heads, and my point is that the general tenor of CCO opinionating by both the editors and the bloggers has and will support a continuation of that trend by spilling vitriole into an otherwise sufficient pool of local talent.

          • NDK..I see brain washing is still alive and well, seems to be working also, we all know why the pool is tainted and it has nothing to do with the CCO, anyone who pays attention (and doesn’t have a agenda) also knows why we hire out of town consultants, lawyers, construction companies, I could give $700k reasons.


          • So true, blanger. But more of that same money would be spent locally if the spenders could trust the locals not to spazz out and mole up.

    • Wasn’t it the CCO that did the math and exposed the McCurdy as a project that would not fly? Wasn’t it the CCO that did the math and predicted that the hotel deal would have problems?

      Maybe the redevelopment group should send the CCO a check for about double whatever Hunden got paid with two years interest included. CCO correctly vetted both projects.

  2. The CCO is pushing for a recipe for success here, with their constructive criticisms.
    Questions about what is on the “Table” are in order, not, blind “Yes, Boss” Leadership from the City Council.

  3. This sounds awfully familiar to a story I spoonfed to you about 2 months ago………..

  4. Note to NDKnow:
    You wasted eight hours of a perfectly good Saturday to dump on people? Why did you feel compelled to inform us that you have nothing better to do with your time? Now climb back up Whiny-Zapple’s butt, which is exactly where you came from!

    • Sorry to disappoint you, but I spent most of the day Saturday painting my granddaughter’s bedroom, ceiling and 4 walls, bright new colors. And you’re one to talk about dumping on people, which is all you do on here all the time.

  5. Yes, I do find this site to entertaing at times. However, I often find myself wondering if there is anything positive to report with regard to your elected officials or if this site was formed solely for the purpose trashing any and every action that they take. I am curious to see if this withers away in the coming months due to the elections having already been decided.

    • No, because the CCO staff and symbiotic bloggers have successfully cast, in their own minds anyway, the newly elected administration into the conglomerated “Machine” that rules Evansville.

      • Your conclusion is not true. We openly stated that many of the people who supported the Winnecke campaign were machine democrats. That does not mean that Winnecke is in their pocket. We hope that he is not but we know that this group will try to put him in their pocket. We have every intention to support the Winnecke Administration in making Evansville a better place. As Mizell opined today, Mr. Winnecke will have his hands full cleaning the messes that Mayor Weinzapfel has made in the early part of his administration. We have every intention of watching his decisions closely and if he needs some constructive feedback we will supply that but our hope is that he does the best thing every day for 4 years.

    • There is an election in 2012. There are a number of county offices, consolidation, the Indiana state legislature, and of course a national election of interest. There is also the passing of the baton from Weinzapfel to Winnecke and how things like the McCurdy, the hotel, Roberts, the parks, litter, and the loss of another corporate headquarters to keep the content interesting.

      By the way we have reported many positive things about local governance but people do not seem to remember that. This site was formed to be the watchdog for local politics. Watchdogs for the most part exist to expose danger and thus the tenor of the writing is negative. Our hope is always that by pointing out bad decisions that they will be avoided or improved. Sometimes they are. The CCO exposed the Homestead Tax Credit debacle and it was reversed. The CCO exposed the way Tom Barnett was paid and it was righted by the City Council. The McCurdy and the new hotel are still works in process and we hope they turn out well but they surely have not been run well thus far.

  6. I am just shocked (not) that the only people to be able to work on new convention hotel would be unions only. Thanks again city council and mayor Jon.

      • realisticly what do you think.If they had non union contractors working on a new downtown hotel you would hear all sorts of whining from people like Jack waldrop and fellow dems.Even if it would save taxpayers money. After all it is the taxpayers that pay these bills but some pols seem to forget that.

        • David Hennig
          If your going to blow off about me at least spell my name right. I never met or even heard of you but I’ll give you credit, you’ve got the guts to sign your name, not like 99% of the cowards on this site.
          Have a nice day
          Jack Waldroup

    • There is absolutely nothing in RFP stating that union labor must be utilized in the construction of the downtown hotel. However, there is no non-union contractor in the area that would be able to succesfully man the project with qualified personnel it would require. The only differnence in the proposals is that Prime would utilize various sub-contractors and Kunkel is going to man the project on their own with local labor unions.

      • There is a requirement to sign a PLA (project labor agreement). The incentives come from government sources therefore “prevailing wages” must be paid and certified according to Davis-Bacon laws. In all fairness under those conditions local union labor is the only viable way for any developer to proceed in Evansville on a project of this magnitude. We are privy to an estimate that this condition will add roughly $2 Million to the cost of construction, but then again PLA’s are very effective at minimizing disruptions and guaranteeing that workers are available when needed.

  7. NDKnow,
    How can you take a whiff of the stuff that goes on in this city every day and smell roses? From where I stand it smells quite offensive. There are example after example of mismanagement, crony favoritism, and SNEAGLE deals going on that I don’t see how anyone can be blind to or believe that these things are good for Evansville. No doubt they are good for some good ole boys and sleazy/greasy politicians. Which one are you?

    • None of the above, but sometimes even skunk cabbage smells better than no vegetation at all.

      • I’m a “if something is worth doing, do it right the first time” type of guy. Seems like the ERC, City/County Council and Mayor are more of the keep trying no matter what the cost until they get it right type. I’m all for being optimistic and and for progress, but not at the expense of being prudent.

        • Pappa….

          It’s the old “Proactive” – “Reactive” mentality, it’s obvious that the city government is a reactive form of government, they float a half-baked idea, appropriate our tax dollars, then sit back and gloat about how good they are, when the short-comings are pointed out or the lack of thinking it through is brought to their attention they go all defensive and start pointing fingers at anyone close enough to blame.

          The sad part is it normally cost twice as much to be reactive than to think things through with a proactive approach….but hey, we’re talking about politics and government you don’t have to be good at anything but smiling for photo ops and talk a good line of bs.


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