IS IT TRUE September 9, 2013

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

IS IT TRUE the parking garage that is part of the $37.5 Million that the City of Evansville is committed to spending to entice HCW to build a convention hotel in downtown Evansville is a part of the proposal that is worth doing some analysis on to determine if any of the $5.4 Million that is proposed to be spent constitutes an outright gift to HCW as $20 Million of direct subsidy to the hotel portion does?…first we must remind our readers that former Mayor Weinzapfel, current Mayor Winnecke when he was a Vanderburgh County Commissioner, and countless supporters of the Ford Center project strongly and rightly asserted that the Ford Center would not need any additional parking to prosper in downtown Evansville?…they had maps, they had studies, and despite the fact that many people were grumbling about downtown parking THEY WERE RIGHT?…the Ford Center, the Centre, the Victory Theatre, Signature School, and all of the downtown businesses are doing just fine with parking availability AS IT CURRENTLY IS?…it is therefore safe to assume that the new parking garage proposed as part of the downtown convention hotel project is there for the hotel and the apartments alone and would not be built but for the needs of the hotel and the apartments?

IS IT TRUE the proposed parking tower will have a minimum of 336 parking spaces and will cost $5.4 Million which equates to $16,071 per space?…the hotel development agreement explicitly states that the parking garage is an inducement to HCW to get them to build the apartments and that the City of Evansville will lease spaces to HCW for the 78 apartments at a rate of $55 per month per space?…if each apartment uses two spaces as is customary about 156 of the 336 spaces will be dedicated to apartments?…the city is also agreeing to lease an additional 150 spaces to HCW on behalf of the hotel at a rate of $4,000 per month or $26.67 per space per month?…these two sources being substantially all of the revenue to the City of Evansville for this parking tower will mean that the City will be getting $12,580 per month ($150,960 per year) for our investment of $5.4 Million?…that is a revenue base of 2.8% per year without considering operating expenses or interest?…the interest rate will most certainly exceed 2.8% so even in a sold out situation this parking garage is a NET LOSER FROM DAY ONE?…given a more reasonable interest rate of 5% this parking garage is guaranteed to lose the City of Evansville $119,040 per year plus operating expenses and maintenance that have been estimated to be at least $100,000 per year?

IS IT TRUE it is safe to say that this parking garage that is not needed in the absence of a hotel is a pure gift of $5.4 Million to HCW plus an additional $220,000 per year for the next 25 years that takes another $5.5 Million from the coffers of the City of Evansville that could be used for other more necessary projects?…chalk this parking garage up as HCW plus $10.9 Million and people of Evansville minus $10.9 Million over the next 25 years?…over the next several weeks we shall look into the other “soft costs” of this project and see just how much of it is gifting and how much is investing in infrastructure?

IS IT TRUE we just about had a stroke when we read the article in the Courier and Press about City Council Attorney Scott Danks tax dispute and wonder why a disputed balance is worthy of front page news?…Mr. Danks openly admits that his own calculation has him owing the State of Indiana $70,000 but that the State is using a tax warrant as a negotiating tactic to try and shake him down for the $91,244 that they say he owes?…either way this is a big tax bill and the reality of this situation is that Mr. Danks and the State will agree on something in the middle?…when that agreement is reached Mr. Danks will pay his bill and go on about earning the kind of living that enables him to pay $400,000 per year in taxes?…we think this report was not only preliminary but that it was politically motivated?…we find it interesting that City Councilman Jonathan Weaver was sought out by the CP to express his opinion on Danks’ personal tax issue when he is neither a CPA, and IRS agent, or even so much as a qualified preparer for H&R Block?…he probably is well qualified as a recognized public figure to dress up like Lady Liberty and dance on a street corner soliciting business for Liberty Tax Service but then only if his recent black eye has healed?…the attack on Mr. Danks by whoever put this issue onto the CP’s plate is a cheap shot built on the politics of envy?…that envy was pointed out clearly in the comment section of the CP where he was vilified for having such a high income and called every kind of tax cheat imaginable?…one thing the CCO knows is that as City Council Attorney Scott Danks has brought a breath of competence and sanity to a position that has recently needed such things?…we look forward to the day this is settled as we know it will be and Scott Danks can get back to serving Evansville in the legal world where such dollars are earned with thoughts and deeds?



  1. It is an ugly black mark against Danks that shows his arrogance. Your defense of Danks’ failure to pay taxes ever year since 2008 is disappointing at best. It is as bad if not worse than the CP article.

    After all, he is our City attorney and should be setting an example. Who does his taxes?

    • Oh, I see, one is not allowed to dispute the IRS or the State of Indiana in your world view?

      The real “black mark” is against Evansville Regional Business Committee member and Evansville Courier&Press Publisher Jack Pate for the timing of his hit piece. Obviously Pate could have brought this to the public’s attention long ago. There is more than just a little politics being played here by publisher Pate.


  2. There are many jobs that require you to pay your own taxes not just business owners. Odd these people can all pay them weekly, biweekly, monthly or however they choose to send them in. It would be easy to fall behind and become open to dispute. It is only common sense to do so in a timely manner to avoid an audit or dispute. Just throwing that out there…

  3. “the attack on Mr. Danks by whoever put this issue onto the CP’s plate is a cheap shot built on the politics of envy?
    he probably is well qualified as a recognized public figure to dress up like Lady Liberty and dance on a street corner soliciting business for Liberty Tax Service but then only if his recent black eye has healed?…” This is what I call a cheap shot. Do you know the real story? Have you ever thought of picking up the phone and asking what happened? Oh I forgot…the CCO relies on moles and rumors!

  4. I personally think this is a matter between Mr. Danks , his CPA and the state tax people.

    If certain individuals continue to defame Mr. Danks I bet he shall sue them for all they are worth. This whole situation has the FOP prints all over it because Mr. Danks stood up for Connie Robinson.

    • I have gotten a couple of letters from the tax man telling me I owe more money and I just send it in even if I know I am right because I fear those bastards. Of course I don’t make $1 Million per year so they never ask me for $21,000. It is more like $300 or $500 and it just is not worth the fight. Once I did send in a letter of explanation when it was near $1,000 and much to my surprise I won and got a nice letter back from the tax man.

      I applaud Mr. Danks for standing his ground in this dispute and wish more people had the nerve to do that. How someone can defend the tax collectors with the scandals surrounding the IRS is just beyond me. Did you see the nerve of that tax dog in the CP that said “that is the state’s money” while the amount is still in dispute. That attitude is the problem and people like Scott Danks are the solution.

    • Danks should not be standing up for what Connie said on this issue. She dug herself a deep hole. He was right in breaking the tension because Connie was getting out of hand by loosing her cool and saying more things than she would later regret.

  5. I know Scott Danks and he isn’t taking this issue lightly. He is an outstanding person and lawyer. How many hundreds of area people and businesses have similar tax problems as Mr. Danks? I bet they also are protesting their tax liability with the tax people.

    I agree with Council Watch that the FOP finger prints are all over this issue. I hope Scott sues the hell out of them for defaming him.

    Oh, Mr. Danks is doing an outstanding job as City Council attorney.

  6. Big news, someone owes the state back taxes. Lets talk about the real issues of this community like giving an outside developer $37 to $44 million of our hard earned tax dollar to build a downtown hotel.

    I also agree that Mr. Danks is doing a heck of job as City Council attorney.

  7. Ink by the barrel has been used as a tool to “crucify” Good People, by those with the Power to do so. Nothing New about that. Remember that poor guard at the Atlanta Olympics? a regular citizen, innocent and a probable hero,-and “Crucified”.
    “Absolute power corrupts Absolutely”.
    Locally, Those with Money and Power, do not want anyone to rise up against them, and their fiefdom, known as Evansville, –evidenced by the Snegal moves taken to deny the Citizens a Referendum on the Arena, the Davis election tactics, demolishing a viable Stadium, or the latest, the Gillenwater flip flop.
    Nothing subtle about it, the arrogance of these self-appointed Rulers is in your face! Peons!
    Can their efforts be thwarted? Maybe they could, if more people would not rush to “Crucify”, based on the urging of these self-serving (ERBC) Creeps.

  8. Mr. Danks please understand that this entire thing about you oweing back state taxes that are under dispute is nothing but political. When you took a public stance supporting Councilwomen Robinsons you pissed off the FOP.

    The majority of the people of this community agrees with your opinion about the way the Evansville cops mis-treat people. Keep your head and high, pay your taxes and continue doing an outstanding job for the citizens of this community and the city council.

    I personally think its time for the good people of this community to call in the Justice Department Civicl Rights Commission to come in and to do a full blown investigation on the activities of the FOP and the Evansville Police Department.

  9. This is my first time to blog but after reading todays IS IT TRUE in the CCO I just to write something.

    I’m insulted in the way that Mr. Danks has been treated by the Courier and Press. So he owes back taxes and is working to pay the state his fair share. How many people do you know who had or has similar tax issue? The answer is-many.

    I watch city council meetings on WINN TV and know that Mr. Danks is going a great job in representing city council. Let’s move on and talk about real issues facing this great city and stop the back room political snipping of good people who are serving our community well.

  10. Disputing taxes due over three years ago is ridiculous!

    That kind of treatment would NOT be given to ordinary citizens. For most people garnishments and the freezing of assets would have begun a long, long time ago. The common man should be angry about this special treatment and expressing that anger is not envy.

    I understand Mr. Danks’ tax returns would be complicated and somewhat controversial, but anything over three years(and a subtantial amount is) old should be paid TODAY, with all interest and penalties applying.

    Further, Mr. Danks owes what he owes, period. This stuff of “negotiating” for something in the middle is hooey. Unless his situation is in the Tax Court, and it only would be IF his returns covered new ground in tax law or his situation or deduction was being used for the first time in front of the IRS/Tax Court, which I HIGHLY DOUBT, he has NO excuse for not paying his taxes, for the correct amount, not a negotiated amount!

    The CCO is correct in calling the CP article politically motivated, they are not correct in making excuses for Mr. Danks.

    Once again the Citizens of Evansville are witnessing another bad play in which ALL the actors are acting childish and irresponsible instead of the adults leaders they’re supposed to be.

    Mr. Danks, anything over three years old, get out your checkbook and pay your taxes TODAY! I’m sure you have the money in your checking/MM account. For those returns less than three years old get on the stick and get this settled, ASAP.

    Courier and Press, shame on your smear piece article.

    That is all.

  11. 13 comments about the $21k that Danks may or may now owe the state and not a damn word about the $11 Million bucks that this new parking garage will cost the people of Evansville.

    Time for a sanity check folks. You went for the shiny object like the morons that post at the CP do.

    Please comment on the parking garage we don’t need and how much of that money is really a bribe to HCW.

    • Good for HCW for the City to build it for them. No one with a head for numbers and willing to be truthful would think this is a good deal for Evansville. This garage is dumber from a financial perspective than the hotel deal.

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