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February 16, 2020

We! We! We! All The Way Home!
I think it started with Luke Messer, the Republican lobbyist whose fervent desire is to defeat Congressman Dan Burton and move to the nation's capital. Unfortunately, it appears that candidate Messer is not the only local politician displaying symptoms of the affliction. I'm fairly certain that Shelbyville Mayor Scott Furgeson is similarly afflicted.

Afflicted? Affliction? "What affliction?" you may be asking. Well, Messer continually refers to himself in the first person plural. It has recently been revealed that Mayor Furgeson also is fond of referring to himself in the first person plural, as evidenced by a spate of stories published during the past week in the local newspaper.

Yes, it's true. Both politicians seem to be afflicted with a "We-We-We! Syndrome."

"We did this... We did that... We need a squeeze... We need a pat... We will fight... We will roam... We, We, We, all the way home."

I know, I know, it's a petty issue. After all, there are plural references to God in the Old Testament and plural references to Jesus in the New Testament. But this is different... at least I hope it's different.

I also hope that Messer's and Furgeson's self-referencing is different from the type associated with multiple personality disorders. In addition, please realize that I am distinguishing third person self-referencing from narration in storytelling, where it is an accepted form of writing. I don't want you to be needlessly confused by that.

I'm simply curious to learn who the "we" are (or is) that politicians refer to when they speak.

Because if someone is elected to a public office as an individual, but speaks in the aggregate, it seems that citizens should have a right to know the identities of everyone who is involved in policy and decision-making. Otherwise, it appears to be something that it's not. Don't you agree?

Maybe Messer and Furgeson could learn something from Popeye the Sailor.

Popeye never tried to be someone he wasn't. He was just himself. Honest, and true, and strong. And he never said "We are what we are and that's all what we are." Instead, Popeye repeatedly professed his individualism when he said, "I yam what I yam and that's all what I yam."

Anyway, the following is a recent story from the local newspaper in which the mayor said "We still plan to allocate $1 million... (to Triton Central Schools)." I think that's what he said, but by the end of the story, I wasn't sure. So, see what you think after you read the story below.

Also, several months ago, a flier was distributed in the northwestern Shelby County area concerning some previous comments by Shelbyville's mayor. Someone kindly furnished me with a copy, if you are interested, you can view it here

Mayor: TIF money still set for Triton

The offer made by city officials nearly two years ago to help Triton Central schools with remodeling projects through Fairland TIF revenues has not been forgotten by city officials, according to Shelbyville Mayor Scott Furgeson.

"We still plan to allocate $1 million of our Fairland TIF money to help the Northwestern Consolidated School Corp.," the mayor said recently. "Not long ago, I spoke with district Superintendent Dr. Ellen Welk and told her that the offer is still good. First, however, we're going to issue a bond to build the West Connector highway and sewer line out there."

Two years ago many Fairland-area residents became upset when Shelbyville officials created a tax increment finance district three miles west of their community near the Fairland Exit of Interstate 74. City officials at the time said they created the TIF district, contiguous to that portion of the city's corporate limits, in order to capitalize on the predicted increase in assessed property values in the area, which now contains the Indiana Live! Casino, Indiana Downs horse race track, Pilot Travel Center and Atlas Cold Storage facility.

Some nearby residents expressed anger at public TIF meetings that Shelbyville, rather than nearby Moral, Brandywine and Sugar Creek townships, would reap the financial benefits of increased property values in the area. After a legal challenge mounted against the TIF failed in Shelby Circuit Court, the mayor assured angry residents that he would see that $1 million of TIF revenue found its way to Fairland-area schools. City officials said the Fairland TIF was only now generating revenue.

"Part of the delay in allocating the TIF money has been waiting for the property tax assessments to be done for the casino area," Furgeson said. "I believe those new assessments have now been completed by the county."

 The mayor said he is confident the casino property is going to get the increased assessed value that has been predicted. He added that city officials want to make certain that no one is going to file an appeal and that good solid numbers are available before the city issues a bond.

"We want to make certain we know what kind of money is going to be coming in with the Fairland TIF before we promise to allocate any portion of it," he said.

(Story by Ron Hamilton - Content Copyright 2010 - The Shelbyville News)

Reader Comments

Posted: Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Article comment by: McTIFFY

To Wondering:
Allow me to clarify --- I didn't PROMISE $1 million dollars --- I DANGLED it. McTIFFY

Posted: Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Article comment by: Wondering

Almost all of the school districts in the state are cutting their budgets greatly due to getting less money from the state government. Northwestern schools have been struggling financially even before these latest state cuts were announced.

Northwestern schools needed this promised $1 million YESTERDAY, not in some vague distant future time.

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