IS IT TRUE July 12, 2013

Mole #3 Nostradamus of Local Politics
Mole #3 Nostradamus of Local Politics

IS IT TRUE July 12, 2013

IS IT TRUE that some members of the City Council’s repeated warnings that the windfall of revenues from the casino riverboat shouldn’t be counted on to last forever and that the City has to work to help promote the riverboat as its largest visitation driver and tourist attraction are starting to come true?…that the CCO has learned from some inside the Civic Center that a recent change in riverboat tax structure will mean a decrease to the City of approximately $600k this year?…this was a legislative change enacted during the last session to help put Indiana’s riverboats on an equal playing field with their neighbors in adjacent states?… that the City of Evansville wasted an opportunity to strongly voice support for a land-based measure in the last session that could have increased the casino’s ability to attract MORE visitors here (many don’t like the old, 3-level riverboat constraints Indiana operates under), and generate MORE tax revenue to the City and region?… instead of trying to figure out ways they could support the casino to be more competitive, they focused on things that would protect their taxes which will inevitably decrease more as non-local customers continue to choose locations that offer land-based gaming?… that this $600k annual decrease to the City’s expected revenue stream will hit especially hard considering it’s been mentally “spent” already on things like subsidized hotel project, dogparks and skateboard parks, and an assortment of other trivial pursuits?

IS IT TRUE that local business Green Tree Plastics was recently featured on the Travel Channel’s Hotel Impossible by host and designer, Blanche Garcia who was prominently standing by the bench donated by Kimball’s National Office Furniture division to the rebuilding of Seaside NJ that was devastated by last year’s Hurricane Sandy?

IS IT TRUE that the CCO would like to congratulate Vanderburgh County Prosecutor Nick Herrmann, Vanderburgh County Chief Deputy Prosecutor Gary Schutte, and Vanderburgh County Deputy Prosecutor Charles Berger on their excellent legal work on a shoestring budget that lead to the conviction and sentencing of the now convicted child murderer Jeffery Weisheit?…as long as the United States of America offers the death penalty as an option in cases that are as cruel and gruesome as this one was death will continue to be an appropriate dispensing of justice?

IS IT TRUE that a particularly vendetta driven commenter on the City County Observer that calls himself or herself WOW must be the most digitally challenged and obsessed fool in Evansville?…not only does this sorry varmint get up at 5am to write his own version of IS IT TRUE to post as a comment but is foolish enough to call the CCO liars about our traffic counts?…the internet traffic counts that we occasionally report are compiled by Google Analytics which is a secure third party program used by marketing professionals to assess the value of their advertising campaigns?…the CCO would like to issue a challenge to WOW to choose a public location with witneeses and provide our access codes to both Google Analytics and WordPress to confirm our traffic counts in a way that will embarrass this tortured obsessive soul into silence or feed his/her obsession to institutionalization?

IS IT TRUE that WOW and others who want to argue with scientifically measured things like internet traffic would get on about the business of maintaining the infrastructure and treasures of the City of Evansville things just might get better here?…the role of the CCO is the role of pointing out instances of bad public policy and what it leads to?…the McCurdy Hotel which has degenerated into a melting hunk of bricks during a prolonged period of abandonment which occurred after the City of Evansville used it as a political tool is a perfect example of what obsession with politics and neglect leads to?…the McCurdy is an embarrassment to an otherwise pretty nice riverfront?


  1. I can see the guy’s point. You would’ve definitely crucified Weaver or others for a DUI instead of just reporting on it. I will agree that WOW’s ranting is a little excessive. Maybe he has some personal axe to grind?

  2. I was at the meeting when Mr. Friend warned fellow council members about this being a possible problem.

    I remember City Council members Adams, Lindsey and President Robinson also showing concern about this issue.

    Looks like the City Controller dropped the ball on this issue.

    Get ready for massive cuts in services or increase in city taxes.

    • One thing is certain and that is the debt service on the city’s bonds has to be paid or the city will suffer with lower ratings. Most of the revenue coming from AZTAR goes towards servicing bond debt.

      There were people who cautioned Weinzapfel about spreading the city’s revenue to thin to cover all his projects plus the existing debt at that time. It basically went in one ear and out the other.


  3. Wow’s posts have defined himself/herself in far more demeaning terms than any of the CCO’s sane posters could ever dream up. Those posters make Wow mad, his/her posts make us laugh. Wouldn’t surprise me if he or she were a hired hand of the C&P.
    Maybe Della perhaps?

    • Indeed it is. Good luck with paring this money with worthy entrepreneurs who stay in Evansville to grow their businesses.

  4. Can’t wait for the Airhead to arrive and give the City a good quality audit. But she’s no CPA and she kisses butt and was too close to the former Supervisor. I think they should bring back the lady who works on Phares Ave. at night. At least she was smart enough to pass the CPA exam

  5. Editor: You state above the following: “…. the CCO has learned from some inside the Civic Center that a recent change in riverboat tax structure will mean a decrease to the City of approximately $600k this year?…”

    I do not believe this statement is correct. I do not think the City or County is going to loose any money from any recent legislative action because of a recent change in riverboat tax structure . Please have “your some inside the the Civic Center” to provide some proof of this allegation. If you find it not true, as I think you will, please retract your story.

    Wayne Parke
    Republican County Chairman

    • Wayne

      Good luck with the retraction request. They have never done so before, and I doubt they ever will. Hypocrites never admit fault

      • Question: Ohio has implemented land base Casino’s? Kentucky has allowed a bizarre form of slot machines and strong movement towards Racions. According to the mayor of Harrisburg, Il, they will be implementing slot machines. Now, with the gaming dynamics changing, to believe that the boat will not be challenged and to continue to be intoxicated over the funds that this fine facility has , in the past, provide Evansville is in the category of nitwittery, as G. Gordon Litty would say. Mr. Ward is an exceptional General Manager, and we all should give him encouragement, but, according to reliable sources, Mr. Winnecke did not become engaged in the land based casino debate at the state level until discussion centered around eliminating the admission fee agreement (costing Evansville millions) but, focused entirely on the admission fee issue, and, did anything to lobby for the land based casino concept, and this is according to the Ways and Means chairman, Mr. Tim Brown….

      • There you go again with an intentionally inaccurate post. Mr. Parke did not request a retraction he simply stated his own disagreement. We have a very well placed source that we believe who stated the $600k figure with the authority to back it up. We believe our source but we also think Wayne believes his statement. We agree to disagree. So what. In the event that we find this to be untrue we will retract as we have on several past occasions.

        May we request that in the event that we are correct that you an Mr. Parke co-author a letter to the editor of the CCO apologizing for calling us out on false pretenses. By the way, at least Wayne Parke has the chutpah to use his name while you continue to stand on your soapbox under one of a nearly a dozen screen names.

        • “WOW” is similar “Della” from the C&P, their posts are usually personal attacks with confused logic that often hero worship the former mayor’s regime. While their posts are unintentionally (to them) humorous at times, over time they get boring with repetitive unsupported drivel and accusations.

        • Editor: I stand by my statement that I do not think the City or County is going to loose any money from any recent legislative action because of a recent change in riverboat tax structure.

          I believe you got some very bad information from your source. If your source/s provides some proof that a recent change in riverboat tax structure will mean a decrease to the City of approximately $600k this year that was caused by some legislative action– you bet I will issue an apology. I hope you do the same if I am correct. 🙂

      • Is this WOW, CCO Truthsqad, OhWow, GetReal, CCO Watcher, CCOJoker, CCOMakingitReal, CCOWatcher, or OhWOWareyouserious?

        All these names are starting to run together and look like one in the same.

      • I think the CCO should put Parke on ignore. He has blatantly refused to answer questions about why he stood in front of the Parks Board in support of demolishing Roberts yet can’t defend the task force process, and he has refused to answer questions on if Dan McGinn did say he hadn’t heard any complaints from the dead or not with regards to the cemeteries.

        And now he’s asking for a retraction on a casino thread? I don’t think it’s possible to be any more hypocritical than that.

        • I have explained my position on demolishing Roberts Stadium. Given the facts at the time the deicison had to be made, I believe it was the right thing to do.

          • Rails&RobertsStadium: I do not recall hearing Dan saying that but I am not saying he did not. I certainly believe our cemeteries should be properly taken care off. I believe everyone does including Dan McGinn

            Our casino does is a good corporate citizen. I am not critizing them. I think you need to re-read the article and my statement/comment.

          • Wayne, your dodging my questions. I did not ask you for your opinion on Roberts. Anyone can claim “facts supported demolition.” What I’m asking you is this do you believe the mayor gave a good faith effort with the task force.

            This mayor never met with my subcommittee, he never followed up with any of the data presented in my subcommittee, and he has never told us any facility he visited that would have given him a feel for what our subcommittee was presenting. Yet he visited Columbus AND Louisville for the skating park? Who paid for that?

            This mayor has yet to tell us if he talked to SMG/Venuworks (neither believed the two would compete), he never told us if he talked to the three tenants interested in roberts, he never got back with Berniece T. on making the facility a disaster relief area, and he never told us the value of the naming rights to the gates which he told me to my face he would look into.

            Basically the mayor did nothing, and yet you’re telling me you felt motivated to speak in front of the parks dept because you felt strongly that Roberts needed to be demolished and not because Winnecke and Co asked you to be there?

            At that parks board meeting, Sherman Stevens who walked the Roberts neighborhoods in the 100 degree heat passing out over 150 yard signs spoke on behalf of Roberts, Brenda Bergwitz who did two rallies, one in the freezing cold, spoke on behalf of Roberts, and Alan Brill who went through the trouble of putting together a business plan spoke in favor of Roberts. Yet you choose to stand behind the mayor. You should be embarrassed!

          • Your responses within regards to McGinn has got to be the most obvious political powder puff response I have ever seen.

            You don’t even know if McGinn made the comments or not yet you believe Dan McGinn believes in a properly taken care of cemetery? How does that work?

            And if McGinn really believed in a properly taken care of cemetery, why didn’t he support replenishing funds for the two cemeteries instead of fighting it? Why didn’t he visit the cemeteries and write an article into the CCO like Connie Robinson? And why hasn’t he come out publicly with his support of getting Cooke and Robertson to come up with a report of problems and needs as requested a few weeks ago?

            I have seen zero evidence that Dan McGinn cares about the city’s cemeteries. And I’m in complete shock that the chairman of the Vanderburgh Co GOP wouldn’t even investigate if McGinn made these comments or not which were brought here by the people I showed you in the link a few weeks ago (and no those screen names arent me).

        • What prompted McGinn’s utterance was a council that was dealing with a finite city budget. They had to decide just how the pie was going to be cut and who would get what size portion. There were several proposals in front of them and they were debating the merits of each.

          In theory, if not in fact, the cemeteries should be self supporting. In order to do that you must keep selling plots and perpetual care, and seek donations.

          I was at the meeting when McGinn let that slip and I chalked it up to the frustration of the moment and not any intent on McGinn’s part to defund or short change the cemeteries.


      • rk812: If this is the best comment you can make on the subject at hand, I suggest you look into a mirror and see what a real DERP person looks like.

        • I looked in the mirror and did not see you or the mayor in it! I see you are protesting the fact that the revenues from the casino are decreasing not increasing. The city keeps adding to our debt with projects that do more for special interest than for the common person of Evansville. The county is fighting to try to make its budget by cutting positions and the city has not had balanced books for how long! What makes you think everything is just peachy!

          • You are expanding the discussion. I did not say nor do I believe everything is peachy. I do not agree with all past expenditures.

          • Mr. Parke, you certainly agree with all present expenditures though, don’t you. (Notice that wasn’t phrased as a question.)

          • Brad: No I do not agree with all present expenditures. You notice that was not a question–whatever that means.

          • Glad to hear it. I stand corrected. Please indicate which expenditures for the current budget year you do not agree with, so we’re clear.

  6. Dear Mr. Parke all you have to do is call your Republican Mayor and City Controller and you shall have the correct answer for your question.

    Can’t wait for you to report back to us on what you found out.

    • I did not check with the Mayor or Controller, but I did check with other people. I stand by my statement. I do not think the City or County is going to loose any money from any recent legislative action because of a recent change in riverboat tax structure.

  7. Oh, Mr. Parks, news flash, the City will be receiving a reduction in the rebate on the Ford Center bonds, you remember, the 35% rebate on the interest, the Build American Bonds, the one we had to collateralize with our COIT (county Option Income Tax) due to the sequester, and, as sources indicate, Mr. Winnecke will be doubling down on the COIT to secure bonding for the hotel. So, the scenario might go something like this, the boat revenue decease, the Flamingo restructures and in doing go, they strike a hard bargain in the upcoming lease negotiations, reducing the city’s lease revenues by a substantial some, the Med School goes to Warrick county, obviously effects the efforts of this new hotel, our COIT funds have to mediate the shortfall, thus, capital improvements, i.e. fire and police equipment, training, etc, those safety sort of things, sidewalks, etc. are now place on the endangered list and alternately the positions of many of our police and fire. Mr. Parks, the last time most of us have been in the basement of the civic center, it was so quite, nobody heard the sounds of printing presses rolling one hundred bills, it is very unfortunate for the taxpayers of this fine community to know that Mr. Winnecke has dusted off the playbook of the late Russell Lloyd, Sr. when it comes to spending and I do not mean to disrespect the late former Mayor, the facts are most evident.

    • Gratefuldead :The article above stated there is going to be lost of revenue to the City because of a recent change in riverboat tax structure caused by recent State Legislative action.

      I stand by my statement: I do not think the City (or County) is going to loose any money from any recent legislative action because of a recent change in riverboat tax structure . Please re-read the article and my response.

      Both the City and the County need to be very careful on how they spend taxpayers money. Things are going to very tight.

      • This is really a laugh coming from someone who supported the demolition of Roberts and it’s replacement with an effing dog park. Also, am I mistaken, or did you also come out in support of the Johnson Controls deal along with our fellow Party member McGinn?

        Answer me this, Wayne, did you or anyone else in our Party in a position to make a vote or affect change in this matter even consider my proposal for meterless billing?

        • I would like to see some of these politicians stand up and tell those individuals that showed up in the yellow t-shirts at the city council meeting that the taxpayers do no owe them a job.

          What ever system the water department used in the past to keep their meters updated, whether it was changing 10% out for 10 years or 20% out for 5 years, it does NOT require this inflated program being proposed. Surely they were not just changing them out as they broke down. That would have been very poor management indeed.

          Keep it in house and hire some temporary workers if you NEED the help with changing out a more modest amount per year until the job is accomplished.

          That should go a long way towards holding down the annual cost to ratepayers and eliminate the need for bonding.

          This whole scheme smacks of Weinzapfel and the machine throwing another bone to union labor right before he left office.


          • Not to mention that Weinzapfel’s employer is probably seeking the bond business for this proposed project.


        • I do not agree with everything in the Johnson Control package that was passed by the City Council. I do believe that the City/taxpayers have a much better deal today than what former Mayor Weinzapel signed– much better! The cost is lower and the new contract language is much better. What Weinzapel signed right before he left office was absolutely terrible.

          Yes I did read and consider your position of meter-less billing. If everybody used the same amount of water and everybody was honest and everybody fixed leaks on their side of the meter, it might work.

          Problem: Not everybody uses the same amount of water and everybody is not honest and when a person’s water bill does not go up if there is a leak on their property that is a problem. Some will not get the problem fixed. Therefore your idea is not a workable idea. This assumes I understood your idea correctly.

          • My proposal accounts for everyone not using the same amount of water by allowing for a tiered billing scheme called “assessed volume billing”, just as they have in the UK, based on the types of property, i.e. commercial/residential, the numbers of bedrooms and bathrooms, whether or not there is a swimming pool on the property, etc.

            The only credible complaint against this scheme came from those who wanted to keep their meter, a complaint easily rectified by allowing them to pay for the upkeep and reading of the meter. For everyone else, the savings from meter reader’s wages (whose jobs could be pared down through attrition) and simplified billing/data entry, likewise facilitating reduced manpower in the billing dept, would have potentially impactful savings for residents on their own. Throw in the savings from NOT buying $47 million worth of high tech meters that will all die within 20 years, and the savings jump even further.

            As for the argument over leaks, the current meters could be left in place for an indefinite period to aid in the detection of leaks if one is suspected. Even under the current system leaks are often not detected by the mere presence of a meter, and homeowners have every incentive to detect and stop damaging leaks on their property even without meters in place. Furthermore, major leaks, the kind normally found by an inflated bill, usually are accompanied by a drop in water pressure detectable anyway.

            If you’d like to review my proposal again, I encourage it:

            It’s the only proposal that makes sense for this city going forward. It’s the only one that will bring true savings to consumers while simultaneously offering the Water Dept a way back in the black without doubling the price of everyone’s water.

          • Indeed it is better to waste $45 Million than it is to waste $57 Million. The stripped down version of the Johnson Controls deal is the equivalent of a teenager being talked out of the $12,000 spinner rims on $57,000 car he doesn’t have the money for. Sanctioning something that is stupid and wasteful over something that was even more stupid and wasteful is as they say stupid and wasteful.

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