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CIB Plan Still Unknown In Governor Daniels' Budget Proposal

Last updated on Wednesday, June 3, 2009

(INDIANAPOLIS) - One key piece of Governor Daniels’ budget proposal is still under wraps: a bailout plan for Indy’s Capital Improvement Board.

In a 180-page budget, the third paragraph from the end says the governor and Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard will jointly present a plan Thursday, to be added to the budget bill.

At a hearing of the legislative subcommittee preparing the budget, House Ways and Means Vice Chairman Scott Pelath dangled the suggestion Daniels had forced the special session when it became clear legislators weren't going to pass a CIB plan.

Daniels says his opposition to the budget crafted by legislators was based purely on financial realities.

But he says he views the CIB as part of the state budget, not a side issue to be log rolled into it. Daniels says the Indiana Convention Center, which the CIB oversees, generates sales tax dollars for the entire state.

With the center expanding next year in a bid to attract ever-larger gatherings, Daniels says the state can't afford to let the CIB's deficit drag it down.

Daniels says he's open to moving one of Gary's two riverboat casinos inland in an attempt to generate more money for the city.

But he's again backing Senate President Pro Tem David Long's declaration that gambling issues will not be considered in next week's special session.

Daniels says legislators can study the Gary casino license and other gambling issues over the summer, then debate the issue in full in next year's session.

He says the special session must be reserved for the budget, including the CIB.

The CIB also oversees the Colts' Lucas Oil Stadium, the Pacers' Conseco Fieldhouse, and the Indianapolis Indians' Victory Field.

The board has shaved $10 million so far off an estimated $47 million shortfall.

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