The Herald Bulletin

Morning Update

Local Politics

July 5, 2014

Ken de la Bastide: City Council given more oversight of Redevelopment Commission

Local elected officials are being given more control over Redevelopment Commissions activities as a result of legislation that went into effect last Tuesday.

One change in the state law is having an immediate impact on the transfer of the Wigwam complex to the private investor group, Wigwam Sports & Entertainment LLC (WSE).

The transfer of ownership of the iconic gym was supposed to be completed on July 7 with Anderson Community School System transferring ownership to the Redevelopment Commission, which would then transfer ownership to WSE.

The Redevelopment Commission will still obtain ownership on Monday, but it has to wait for the city council to pass a resolution on Thursday to complete the transfer to WSE.

Another change is for a redevelopment commission that agrees to make payments on property for three years, or if the purchase price exceeds $5 million. Unlike in the past, city councils have to approve the agreement.

Redevelopment commissions are also prohibited from obtaining property through eminent domain.

The Anderson Redevelopment Commission has only used eminent domain in the past to obtain right of way along streets.

Local redevelopment commissions are also being required to provide information on previous tractions to an interim summer study committee.

Although no one is citing specific communities for the changes, the Carmel City Council has been battling with Mayor Jim Brainerd for several years over the activities of the Carmel Redevelopment Commission.

Pawn shop ordinance discussion

Earlier this year the Anderson City Council passed an ordinance to place further requirements on the operation of a pawn shop in the city with additional information to be provided to the Anderson Police Department.

Local pawn shop owners are objecting to the changes, which exceed the state regulations.

In May, Council President Pam Jones appointed three council members to a committee to meet with the shop owners and Anderson Police Department representatives.

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