Friday, February 13, 2009

Find A Felon Friday - 02.13.2009

James Gunterman

Address: 3416 Kramers Lane, Apt #21

Date of Birth: 11/8/53

Sex: Male

Aliases: None

Height: 5'11"

Weight: 250

Hair Color: Brown

Eye Color: Brown

Race: Caucasian

- Sexual Abuse 1st Degree (19 counts)
- Victim less than 14
- Failure to Comply with Sex Offender Registry

Let's Get Em' Boys!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Mayor to Build "Bike Center" At All Costs

In the face of a $20 million dollar budget shortfall, increased fees for police officers, employee furloughs, reduced city services, elimination of Sunday hours at libraries, closure of Otter Creek Park, massive monthly job losses and worsening economic conditions, the city of Louisville has announced it is seeking federal funds to the tune of $1.3 million dollars to construct a "bike station". The facility is designed to cater to the elite few that use bicycles to commute downtown, complete with a repair shop and showers. Mayor Jerry Abramson's spokesperson Chris Poynter has stated that even if the federal money isn't approved, the city will push forward and find the money to build this idiotic, limited-appeal project.

Here's an excerpt from the Courier-Journal article:
"We've been discussing the project for several years, and now we're ready to move forward," said Poynter, adding that the city hopes to have a design by year's end and start construction once it is funded. "We'd like to have it built yesterday."

Poynter said the intent is to have secure parking for bicycles, as well as lockers and showers to accommodate commuters who need to change into good clothes for the work day. A bike shop with rudimentary sales and repair services could also be part of the station, which would be close to bus lines, he said.

The entire C-J article can be found HERE.

There is simply NO WAY this idea can be allowed to move forward. This type of reckless fiscal attitude has contributed handsomely to the dire condition of the city's finances. Besides, how many people will this serve? Otter Creek served half a million per year, and Southwest Library was full each Sunday. There are currently no plans to reopen Otter Creek or restore Sunday hours at the libraries.

Below you will find video of the mayor describing the city's financial position.

Abramson is an avid cyclist, hence the "pet" nature of this project. It is too bad for us he isn't an avid camper or Sunday library patron. This arrogant project and the overall snootiness factor surrounding the issue contribute to my undying fascination to kill the idea as quickly as possible. Together we can put an end to this nonsense. Contact your councilperson immediately. The Metro Council was to vote tonight on a resolution authorizing Abramson to apply for the federal aid. This resolution has to fail at all costs, even if it torpedoes other projects. There is a proper time for projects such as this. This ain't it. Let me know if you can help.

Valley Report Video: Mayor Addresses State Transparency Bill

Power to the People

There is a furious discussion going on among activists right now in Louisville about the foreign-owned, for-profit electric utility that operates LG&E, known as E.ON (E.OFF to activists). The prevailing idea among the group is to bury the power lines to protect them as well as protect the public from the damage and stupidity that comes with major weather events like Windstorm 2008, Ice Storm 2009 and last night's February Thunderstorm. These storms rip down power lines and leave "customers" with no recourse but to flock to shelters or sit and wait for the lines to be strung up again. The victims of the storm are then required to pay handsomely to protect the profits for the shareholders of E.ON. That is an idea that is losing favor quickly around here, and rightly so.

Publicly owned utilities have historically had lower costs and better local control through locally-elected boards. Investor-owned utilities, particularly those foreign-owned such as E.ON exist only as a cash register for stock holders who have no concern for the community in which the utility operates. Enriching the investors is the goal. Profit is job one.

Public Service Commissions, as in Kentucky, set rates for investor owned utilities. The commissions are unaccountable, appointed (unelected) boards that serve only the company wishes for profit, and do not exist to promote the well-being of the power grid, transmission system or customer.

It is my opinion a publicly owned utility would serve the community's interest in future power generation technologies such as wind, water and solar. As it currently stands in Louisville with E.ON, one can expect to rely on filthy coal-fired power plants until the end of time. Or the end of coal. And with all the power being transferred via exposed, overhead lines that are vulnerable to the crazy weather patterns we are experiencing.

A government-owned utility isn't the answer. Neither is what we have now.

Leo Weekly's Stephen George has written an excellent article on the idea of a municipally-owned electric utility that should get your attention. Read it HERE.

If you aren't angry about this situation, wait until you get your next bill.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The Case for Transparency

Do you want to know where your money goes when it leaves your paycheck and goes into the dark, black, bottomless hole of Louisville Metro Government? Are you at all curious as to why the Louisville Metro Council seems as though it has relatively no power when it comes to the city's budget priorities? Do you mutter to yourself, how did we get ourselves into this $20 million dollar mess? If so, you will be pleased to know that a bipartisan bill has been crafted tentatively titled the "Metro Louisville Budget Transparency Act". The legislation is set to be introduced soon in the Kentucky Legislature. HERE is a link to the text.

Supported by labor groups and taxpayers like you and I, this bill will insure all of the city's budget and spending information is completely open to the public, not just vague "summaries" and innuendo. Louisville bloggers began the "Open the Books" movement late last year, and it has finally come to this.

WAVE3 has the story HERE. For further study and discussion on the subject, see the facebook group and the Louisville History & Issues forum.

Tuesday Afternoon Roundup

C-J: MSD is asking citizens to keep ditches and drains clear of storm debris, just days after city officials told residents to put the debris in front of their homes, but out of the street, for pickup.

LEO: Phillip Bailey has written a column in this week's LEO on the number of lawsuits facing Louisville Metro, and it is a good one. Filing a lawsuit against the city seems to be the only way to get a response from them these days.

The Local Weekly
: Looking for a party? St. Andrew Academy’s First Annual Mardi Gras Purple and Gold Gala. 7724 Columbine Drive, Louisville, KY 40258. February 21, 2009.
Dinner 6:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m. Games from 7:00 p.m. – 1:00 a.m. Dancing all night long, Silent and Live Auctions throughout the night. Your ticket includes admission, dinner & drinks for two!(You must be 21 years of age or older to enter. FOR INFORMATION, OR TO PURCHASE A TICKET FOR $50.00 per couple,$30 for a single. CALL BETH BOLUS at 935-4578 ext.276.

: Among other things, it looks as though President Obama's stimulus bill will lower taxes on those receiving unemployment. This is a good idea.

Fox41: Rest easy. The KFC secret recipe is now in a new vault, after being transferred from an "undisclosed location" overnight.

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Today's Fun Fact - Floyd County, IN. Does It Better

It is an interesting fact that has not had much discussion, so here it goes: Floyd County is the second-smallest land area in the state of Indiana, with 148 square miles of land. And yet Floyd County, Indiana has a total of five (5) storm debris drop-off sites, two (2) more than Louisville-Jefferson County proper, which covers 400 square miles. There are also ten (10) times as many people living in Louisville than live in Floyd County, but it is obvious they in Southern Indiana are getting ten (10) times the government, and at a bargain price. To Wit:

From Fox41:
In southern Indiana, New Albany residents can drop off debris at 1706 State Road 111, near the intersection of St. Rd. 111 and Jackson Street. The site will be open 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. The New Albany Police Department Traffic Division will be there to check driver's licenses or other forms of identification.

And Floyd County residents can also drop off storm debris at any of the following locations:
# Letty Walter Park on St. Mary's Road in Floyds Knobs
# Galena Lamb Park on Highway 150 in Galena
# Gary Cavin Park (Edwardsville Park) in Edwardsville
# Greenville Park on Button Town Road in Greenville

Louisville Metro has three (3) drop-off sites:

# Hubbards Lane Public Works Facility, 595 Hubbards Lane
# Meriwether Public Works Facility, 600 Meriwether Ave.
# Behind the Southwest Government Center, 7219 Dixie Highway

Maybe this is a good question to ask Mayor Abramson when you see him Wednesday at the Metro Dem Club meeting. Why is it that a "World Class" city like Louisville cannot clean up after a storm as efficiently as our neighbors in Floyd County? Do we lack the infrastructure? Or do we lack the leadership?

I spent some time at the Southwest drop-off site today. The entrance has finally been reconfigured as to not block traffic on Dixie Highway, with people instead entering from St. Andrews Church Road. The mood among those in line was, to say the least, sour. Especially when they learned their government was being upstaged by those "hapless rubes" in Floyd County. I shot some video, but none of those in line wanted to be interviewed on camera. They were angry, tired, dirty and, once again, ashamed of their city. They used words like "pathetic" and "clueless" to describe cleanup efforts organized by city managers and used even stronger language for the city's Executive Branch. It was even mentioned that our brothers and sisters in the East End were getting poor treatment as well.

As one man put it, "Things are tough all over. There was no plan. It's time for a change in City Hall, I think."

Mayor to Appear Wednesday @ Dem Club Meeting

Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson will be on hand Wednesday at the monthly meeting of the Metro Democratic Club. Abramson is scheduled to discuss the "state of the city", the ice storm response, the budget and will take questions from the crowd. The meeting is being held at the American Legion Hall, 2919 Bardstown Road, directly across from Krispy Kreme Doughnuts, and the mayor will arrive at 6:30.

If you are on facebook, you may RSVP for the event by clicking HERE.

They will be serving booze. It will be crowded. Citizens are becoming increasingly hostile toward the mayor and his anti-labor policies. He is speaking to the Metro Democratic Club, a body he avoids at nearly all costs. These elements make this a must-see event.