Shelby County citizen activist, Mike Carpenter, submitted written questions regarding changes at Intelliplex Park to the Major Hospital Board of Directors. His letter to the hospital board was published here on October 19, 2008.
Mike received a response from Major Hospital. Following is his original letter with the hospital's responses to each question:
Major Hospital Board of Directors
150 W. Washington St.
Shelbyville, IN 46176
Ladies and Gentlemen:
After my review of the minutes to the August 25 meeting, I noticed that several comments have not been included. Specifically, Mr. McNeely's statements that I should contact C.B. Ellis for a response to any questions that I might have. For this reason and in order to avoid any future confusion, I believe it is in everyone's best interest if I acquire documented clarification to my questions. I am requesting a written response to the following questions:
#1 When exactly was the Pioneer Program shut down?
ANSWER: "At the time the services of CB Richard Ellis were retained, it was determined that the pioneer program had fulfilled its purpose and that it was time to transition to a new marketing plan."
#2 Did the hospital board vote to discontinue the Pioneer Program? In which meeting did this occur? May I have a copy of this meeting's minutes?
ANSWER: "Marketing decisions for Major are determined during executive session committee meetings."
#3 Why was the Pioneer Program discontinued?
ANSWER: "The program had accomplished its primary goal of encouraging substantial initial investment and a solid employment base. It was determined a new program with CB Ellis would be employed to spur more development in the park."
#4 Did the board or its attorney inform the city council or the county council of the decision to discontinue the Pioneer Program? If so, by what means, and when?
ANSWER: "Major announced the use of CB Richard Ellis for marketing in publications such as The Shelbyville News and the IBJ."
#5 Did Tony Lennen and/or any of the board of directors inform the IEDC of the discontinuation of the Pioneer Program prior to, or during the re-certification last year? If not, why not?
ANSWER: "The IEDC was informed of Major's decision to retain CB Richard Ellis for assistance in marketing and further development of the park. The IEDC is very familiar with CB Richard Ellis and continues to work with Major, SCDC and CB Richard Ellis in trying to bring more development to the park."
#6 If the IEDC was not informed at that time, are they now aware that the Pioneer Program has been shut down?
ANSWER: "By virtue of its frequent interactions with CB Richard Ellis and numerous joint discussions with prospective tenants of the park, the IEDC was aware of the marketing transition and continues to be involved in the current marketing of the park."
#7 Did the IEDC order the hospital to shut down the Pioneer Program as a condition of the two- year certification?
#8 Why wasn't the general public told of the discontinued Pioneer Program at the time it was eliminated?
ANSWER: "The Shelbyville News announced to the public that the Hospital had retained the services of CB Richard Ellis for marketing and development of the park. As the Hospital (and other progressive entities) move from one marketing program to another, there is never an announcement that prior initiatives are being 'discontinued.' The marketing effort for business must focus on the future."
#9 Major Hospital received $111,386.70 from the Redevelopment Commission Tech Park Fund on 11/22/2006, what was that money used for?
#10 Other than marketing the tech park, has the hospital given C.B. Ellis any other responsibilities concerning guidelines for the use of Redevelopment Commission Tech Park Funds? May I have a copy?
ANSWER: "No other responsibilities have been given to CB Richard Ellis. They are only responsible for the development of marketing efforts."
#11 Has C.B. Richard Ellis developed and/or implemented any programs, projects or guidelines intended to replace the Pioneer Program? May I have a copy?
ANSWER: : "CB Richard Ellis has development (sic) an excellent marketing program for the park. Some of there (sic) work can be seen at the Intelliplex web site and they have other materials at their offices."
#12 Has the hospital filed any reports or other documents with the IEDC, or any other state agency, concerning the Intelliplex park, the Redevelopment Commission, or the Certified Tech Park Funds?
ANSWER: "The hospital files all reports that are required by law."
#13 Has the hospital provided or assisted in the information gathering effort? Including, reports concerning employment records; reports concerning Intelliplex park; and/or reports concerning Certified Tech Park Funds. I am officially requesting copies of any and all such documentation.
ANSWER: "The IEDC has not requested from the hospital and the hospital has not filed any such report with the IEDC."
#14 Is the hospital currently being investigated by any federal or state agency concerning Intelliplex Park or concerning the use of Certified Tech Park Funds?
#15 How many of the items on the Memorandum of Understanding handed down by the IEDC last year as a condition for the two-year certification have been complied with? What are those items and when were they implemented?
ANSWER: "The hospital is not a part of that memorandum of understanding."
#16 Does the hospital have a contract with the city and/or the county to receive $125,000 per year in EDIT funds? If yes, will you please describe the hospital's commitment to the arrangement? Did the hospital promise a certain amount of new jobs?
ANSWER: "Both the City and the County passed ordinances reflecting their obligations with regard to the annual payment of funds. Copies of those ordinances are available at City Hall and at the County Annex."
#17 If the hospital took out bonds for $30 million, which included the city's $1.5 million share and the county's $1.5 million share of the tech park's infrastructure in order to save both the city and the county interest (by not taking out their own bonds), why is it going to cost both parties $3 million apiece over a 24-year period?
ANSWER: "The Hospital secured the debt in order to achieve a lower interest rate. This resulted in substantial savings to the public."
#18 If the city or county councils decided to reduce or discontinue donating the EDIT funds to the hospital, what action will the hospital take?
ANSWER: "We believe the City and County will honor their commitment."
#19 Did any of the businesses which moved to Intelliplex agree to pay, in full, the inflated purchase price which was established under the Pioneer Program? Since the Pioneer Program has been shut down, are the businesses still required to pay off the inflated purchase price in full?
ANSWER: "No. The discontinuation of the pioneer marketing program does not change the underlying concept that jobs created in the park generate funds from the State which can be used for redevelopment purposes and to offset portions of the 'retail' purchase price. The quality and quantity of jobs created will be used to determine the final selling price."
#20 Did the inflated purchase prices for the lots at Intelliplex change at all since C.B. Richard Ellis has been hired? If yes, I am officially requesting a copy of those changes.
ANSWER: "CB Richard Ellis and Major use numerous marketing techniques, including discounted list prices, negotiating leases and lease back arrangements, offering incentives related to the quality and quantity of jobs created, etc. Any interested purchaser can inquire from and will be directed to CB Richard Ellis to determine what lots are available, the current asking price, and what options or vehicles exist to assist a quality tenant who would bring jobs and opportunities to the community."
#21 Was the hospital contractually required to create jobs as a condition to receiving EDIT and/or Tech Park Funds?
ANSWER: "There is no specific number of jobs. Obviously, the goal is to create as many quality jobs as possible."
Thank you in advance for your cooperation and I look forward to your response.