Monday, February 27, 2006

Forced Annexation Foes Moving Forward

The Noblesville Daily Times reported Saturday that the Geist United Opposition raised over $10,000 at their most recent public meeting last Tuesday. That's quite outstanding for one evening. From the Times:

United Geist Opposition collected more than $10,000 Tuesday night from area residents opposed to annexation by the town of Fishers. Opposition leaders estimate that legal costs could be as much as $125,000.

The meeting at Hamilton Southeastern High School drew over 300 people. Residents were introduced to Stephen R. Buschmann, the attorney retained to represent the Geist opposition. Buschmann had recently represented Home Place in its successful campaign against annexation by Carmel.
I found Hamilton County Sheriff Doug Carter's comments most interesting:

In a phone interview Wednesday, Carter said he wanted to put an end to the rhetoric about police protection. Carter told those attending that Geist is adequately protected and that police protection would not necessarily improve if annexation is successful.

“This political hot potato that's being passed around has nothing to do with public safety,” Carter said Wednesday.
I like to believe that I get a good read on a person when they speak. In the Sheriff, I have always observed a deep earnestness in his approach to his work. I believe him when he says that if the Fishers Police Chief calls for 50 of his deputees in a moment of need that he will send them. And, when Carter says that the issues surrounding annexation are nothing to do with public safety, I believe him there, too.


JQFR said...

The Fishers Topics article from March 2, 2006 was even more enlightening. The fund-raising chairwoman "declined to provide a total amount" of money collected by the opposition group. Was this a effort to not tip their hand or reluctance to admit that they are woefully short of the amount needed?

The article also states that "each of the approximately(?) 27 neighborhoods in the area have a neighborhood coordinator". Unfortunately the list posted on the atgeist web site (btw, operated by a MARION county resident not affected by the annexation"Hmmm how can I use this to get higher hit counts on my web site?) only lists 9.

Speaking of this web site there are posts concerning the young man interviewed by the TV news after the meeting who soke in favor of the annexation, trying to assertain his identity. A follow-up post by a gentleman stated that he was "doing some checking" and that he couldn't identify the young man as a "resident of Fall Creek township". It is intersting that when I did some checking on the identity of the guy "doing the checking" it turns out that he is an employee of the Hamilton County Surveyors Office(btw, also a MARION county resident...hey aren't they the ones who signed off on the Faultless property annexation?). It's no wonder that people are afraid to come forward with their support for the annexation when their comments are censored by the alleged community web site and people are being "checked" after giving their opinion.

It is absolutely irresponsible for this vocal minority to begin whipping people in to a emotional frenzy over this thing before conducting a census or at minimum a scientific poll of the affected residents to determine if a 65% majority even exists. 100% of the residents of the area that I am aquainted with support it. If the HOAs of geist REALLY had the best interests of their residents at heart they would have each pooled a couple hundred dollars and commissioned this poll.

Has anyone asked the question, "What happens if 3 out of 4 of the annexation areas fail to obtain the 65%?" Why of course all of the money will be returned to the original donors and the 4th area will fall in with the majority...right? Doubtful...So much for being "united". And why didn't anyone at the meeting question the statement by the self-appointed "historian(comedian)" concerning the "talks" that had gone on before the involuntary annexation was announced. Is there a possibility that Fishers was offering abatements or reduced sewer hookups as incentives? We may never know.

This may be my last post on the subject here Mike. I've been rude by trying monopolize your blog to vent on just this one issue. I've started my own blog here.

Mike Kole said...

No need to apologize for posts here. They have served me well. Also, I appreciate the linkage on the new blog. Thanks!

The important thing for me is the idea that this is a forced annexation. If it were truly sought by the people of Geist, I would have no opposition to it. Everything else is a secondary issue to that.

(Here's where it gets a little cloak & dagger on the 'HCSO Mafia'.) You might want to double check on some of your facts, though. Keep in mind that I work in the Hamilton County Surveyor's Office myself, so I know who everybody is there, and where they are from. Interestingly, there are two different people you reference- one gentleman who is checking on residencies, and another who verifies annexations. Did you know that both are Republican candidates for township offices in Hamilton County? Also, there is only one Marion County resident employed by HCSO. He's a Plan Reviewer. Interestingly, the Surveyor's Office has yielded no less than five current Republican candidates for office- in Washington, Fall Creek, Delaware, and Jackson Townships, plus another in Henry County. Also, there is one Democratic candidate for office in Madison County. I'm the only Libertarian, and only statewide candidate in the office. Mr. Ward's tentacles will spread far and wide!

JQFR said...

Well I guess you would know about residencies of HCSO employees then. The phone book could be wrong. And since I owe no allegiance to any political party (I support candidates...not parties) I would have no clue or interest as to the people running for the republicans.

One final thought, is it really fair to characterize this as a "forced annexation" before it is even determined that a majority are opposed? If my prediction comes true and the remonstrance fizzles, then the point is moot. It becomes simply an annexation of a group of households, the majority of which just didn't know how to go about getting it done.

Mike Kole said...

In a voluntary annexation, petitioners bring forward a request to the Town for annexation.

In a forced annexation, the Town initiates the legal action without benefit of a petition having been brought forth by a property owner or multiple property owners.

J.Q.F.R. said...


Apparently the atgeist.joke guy thought better of having the HCSO employee post to a public forum about his "checking on" people. The two postings I refered to have mysteriously disappeared from the atgeist.joke message board. hmmmmm Seems like the Fishers Town Council isn't the only entity that plays "catch me if you can" with their web information. (good thing I saved a screen shot...might come in handy)