“IS IT TRUE” APRIL 1, 2019

first_imgFacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailShare We hope that today’s “IS IT TRUE” will provoke honest and open dialogue concerning issues that we, as responsible citizens of this community, need to address in a rational and responsible way?IS IT TRUE according to the Indy Star the Chairman and CEO of Spectacle Entertainment, Rod Ratcliff have contributed more than $1 million to the Republican Governors Association since 2016?   …the RGA became a financial lifeline for Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb in 2016 after his campaign got a late start and was then restricted from accessing the campaign funds of his predecessor, now-Vice President Mike Pence?IS IT TRUE the Indy Star also reported: “that since 2016, Rod Ratcliff’s companies have given $577,500 to the Republican State Leadership Committee, a national organization that helps down-ballot statewide and legislative candidates”?  …”this group reportedly gave more than $550,000 to the campaigns of Holcomb’s lieutenant governor, Suzanne Crouch, and the Indiana House Republican Campaign Committee, which is led by House Speaker Brian Bosma”?IS IT TRUE the Inday Star reported that “in 2005, as the owner of Hoosier Park in Anderson, Rod Ratcliff set up a charity organization amid a push to legalize slot machines at horse tracks and paid Rep. Dave Frizzell $68,000 to serve as its president”?IS IT TRUE last week it was also reported in the Indy Star that “The flight’s tax records show the costs of Spectacle Entertainment to fly Governor Holcomb to two National Republican Conference Of Governors were about $20,000″?  … “these flights gave Spectacle Entertainment’s CEO Rod Ratcliff and his business partners hours of exclusive access to the governor”?  …”it’s a well-known fact that the Governor has final say over the plans to move two Gary casinos to more lucrative locations”? …it was also reported by the Indy Star that one of the flights was just a day before Spectacle Entertainment’s CEO Rod Ratcliff announced plans to acquire those two casinos”?IS IT TRUE that the Indy Star reported: “that the Chairman and CEO of Spectacle Entertainment, Rod Ratcliff have built a career on making big bets on new gambling opportunities in Indiana”? …they Indy Star reported that Mr. Ratcliff was a driving force behind the state’s decision to legalize riverboat gambling in the 1990s and to allow slot machine casinos at horse tracks in the mid-2000s”?IS IT TRUE the Indy Star published that In 2005, “as the owner of Hoosier Park in Anderson, Rod Ratcliff set up a charity organization amid a push to legalize slot machines at horse tracks and paid Rep. Dave Frizzell $68,000 to serve as its president”.IS IT TRUE according to the Indy Star “in 2015 a political fundraising campaign was started by the Chairman and CEO of Spectacle Entertainment, Rod Ratcliff in order to get approval by the state to allow live table games at racinos was held at an off-track gambling parlor in Downtown Indianapolis”?  …”Spectacle Entertainment hosted more than 30 fundraisers for lawmakers”?IS IT TRUE that the following Indiana Casino owners contributed the following amounts of money to the National Republican Governors Association in 2018?  …that Spectacle Entertainment (Majestic Star 1 and 11) donated $496,486? …Penn National-Ameristar, Hollywood Casino gave $175,000? …that Caesars-Horseshoe So Indiana, Harrah’s, Indiana Grand, Hoosier Park, and Horseshoe Hammond contributed $60,000?  …Boyd Gaming-Blue Chip, Belterra give $25,000?  …the IRS records showed that the National Republican Governor Association didn’t receive any political donations from the Eldorado Resorts, Tropicana Evansville or French Lick Casinos owners in 2018?IS IT TRUE over the several year’s government watchdogs have expressed concerns that new amendments made to casino gaming laws were seemingly motivated by donations to the right political person or political group? …we wonder why one of these governmental watchdog groups hasn’t asked the proper enforcement authorities to look into any possible wrongdoing on anyone in the gaming business?IS IT TRUE we wonder why members of our local state legislative delegation, Evansville Mayor Winnecke, members of City Council, Vanderburgh County Commission or County Council hasn’t publicly said one thing about the current gaming laws being amended to allow Spectacle Entertainment to open a new casino in a city just 150 miles from Evansville? …if this happens it will adversely affect the future profits of Tropicana-Evansville and the tax money the city and county receive from local gaming? …we hope the reason why our elected officials haven’t publically addressed this issue is that they are gathering facts concerning this issue and not because they received a political donation from the powers that be?IS IT TRUE that ”Generally, accrual accounting is recognized as superior to cash accounting, as accrual accounting provides a more accurate picture of a local government’s current financial position? Under accrual, the local government must possess and report the requisite resources to meet each expense?   …this, in turn, provides a more complete picture of the fiscal situation of a local government over the course of the fiscal year?  … under cash accounting, the government can simply report revenue or expenditures as they occur, making it difficult to determine if the local government’s financial situation is truly in balance?“IS IT TRUE as a result, local governments with unfunded liabilities could potentially hide these obligations for several years before it becomes apparent they are unable to meet them? …in addition, meeting GAAP standards requires local governments to produce government-wide financial statements under the accrual format? … failure to produce GAAP-based statements reduces the comparability of Indiana’s fiscal indicators to states that comply with GAAP, and likely will result in higher local government borrowing costs in the future.?”Todays“Readers Poll” question is: If you’re an elected official and someone donates  $500,000 to your campaign do you feel that they expect you to do something from them?Please go to our link of our media partner Channel 44 News located in the upper right-hand corner of the City-County Observer so you can get the up-to-date news, weather, and sports. We are pleased to provide obituaries from several area funeral homes at no costs.  Over the next several weeks we shall be adding additional obituaries from other local funeral homes.  Please scroll down the paper and you shall see a listing of them..If you would like to advertise on the CCO please contact us at City-County [email protected]:  Any comments posted in this column do not represent the views or opinions of the City-County Observer or our advertisers.”READERS FORUM” last_img read more

OCNJ Daily Celebrates First Anniversary

first_imgThe beach at Fifth Street during an October 2014 northeast swell.OCNJ Daily turned a year old on Thursday.The site posted 1,169 stories and 2,315 reader comments in its first year — all dedicated exclusively to Ocean City.OCNJ Daily enjoys a remarkably large and loyal audience, and that’s the key to our continued success. If you find the free access to our Ocean City news coverage is of value to you, there are a couple ways you can help us sustain it and expand it:Newsletter: Tell a friend about our free morning e-mail news updates. Links to all the day’s new stories and images at no cost. Sign up here: ocnjdaily.com/newsletter.Facebook: Get our Ocean City updates in your news feed by “liking” us on Facebook. Ask a few friends to do the same.  facebook.com/ocnjdailyJoin the Conversation: Visit ocnjdaily.com every day. Share your comments on any story (comments policy). Send us news tips, images, video links or other contributions: 609-513-0255 or [email protected]last_img read more

McClellan Leaves City Council Amid Praise, Tears

first_imgBy DONALD WITTKOWSKICouncilman Antwan McClellan promised he wouldn’t cry. Moments later, his voice choked up with emotion and the tears began to roll down his cheeks.“I was not going to cry, but I blew it,” he joked.He was not alone. During an emotional meeting, members of City Council tearfully said farewell Thursday night to McClellan as he prepares to leave the governing body to take a seat next week in the state Assembly.McClellan, 45, who has represented Ocean City’s Second Ward since 2012, won election in November as part of a Republican team with Sen. Michael Testa and Assemblyman-elect Erik Simonsen that captured control of the First Legislative District representing Cape May, Cumberland and Atlantic counties.In thanking his colleagues for their support and guidance over the years, McClellan vowed he would always keep Ocean City in his heart while representing the district at the Statehouse in Trenton“I love you. I respect you. I love Ocean City, and I’ll wear this wherever I go,” he told his Council colleagues, referring to a shirt emblazoned with the Ocean City logo.He added, “I’m still going to represent Ocean City well.”During his last City Council meeting, McClellan stood next to his mother, Cola Mae McClellan, and his fiancée, Angela Mason, as a proclamation was read in his honor by Council President Peter Madden. Gathered around them were the other Council members and Mayor Jay Gillian.The proclamation praised McClellan for his roles over the years as an elected official, community volunteer, church leader, athletic coach, youth mentor and former member of the Board of Education, among other positions he has held.“(He) has served City Council, the Second Ward and all of Ocean City with honor and distinction since 2012, acting as a quiet leader with a level head and even hand,” it read.Members of City Council and Mayor Jay Gillian join Antwan McClellan while a proclamation is read in his honor by Council President Peter Madden, at left.McClellan embraced his mother after the proclamation was read. In an interview after the meeting, his mother noted that she was “very proud” of her son.In addition to joining the Assembly as a new member, McClellan is also preparing for his Oct. 24 wedding to Angela Mason, 43.“It warms my heart to see all of the love for him and how he has been embraced by the community,” Mason said in an interview.McClellan will be sworn into the Assembly on Jan. 14. He has already made history by becoming the first African-American elected to represent the First Legislative District and will be the first African-American Republican lawmaker in the state Legislature since 2002, according to media reports.His Council colleagues predicted he will become an exemplary state lawmaker. Speaking one at a time, they gave him a warm send-off that was filled accolades, humor and plenty of tears.They often choked back emotion while talking about their deep friendship with McClellan and the love and respect they have for him as a public official and community leader.“Antwan, there’s no better person than you to do this,” Councilman Bob Barr said, pledging his love and support for McClellan as he embarks on his Assembly career.Councilman Tony Wilson also expressed his love for McClellan and said he considers him part of his family.“I’m a better man for having you in my life,” Wilson told McClellan as he fought back tears.Madden, also close to tears, simply said to McClellan, “I love you. I’ll miss you.”Antwan McClellan joins fellow Council member Keith Hartzell in prayer at the start of the meeting.In his prayer to start the meeting, Councilman Keith Hartzell called on God to guide and protect McClellan during a “turbulent time of politics” in the Statehouse.Hartzell said the people in Ocean City know that it was “no accident” that God “picked Antwan to go to Trenton.”“Politics is a contact sport,” said Hartzell, while comparing Trenton to the major leagues of politics.“If anyone’s prepared for the major leagues, you are,” Hartzell said to McClellan.Councilwoman Karen Bergen praised McClellan for serving with “grace, dedication and compassion.”“They need people like you in Trenton,” Bergman said.Councilman Michael DeVlieger made similar remarks, telling McClellan that “Trenton needs you. We need you in Trenton.”“I’ve never met a person who had a more pure heart and clearer mind than you,” DeVlieger said to McClellan.From left, Councilmen Bob Barr, Antwan McClellan and Keith Hartzell share a light moment.Mayor Gillian caused the Council Chambers to erupt in laughter when he joked that all of the accolades showered on McClellan made it sound like “Moses is going to walk up.”Gillian spoke of how McClellan has become a “statesman” of public service who avoided partisan politics by following his conscience.“Be that statesman. Don’t worry about that party line,” Gillian urged of McClellan when he joins the Assembly.Earlier in the meeting, McClellan thanked Gillian and members of his administration for their support during his time on Council.“I’ve learned a lot from you, Jay. You’ve been with me the whole time,” McClellan said.It was then that his tears began to flow. City Councilman and Assemblyman-elect Antwan McClellan expresses his thanks during his last City Council meeting while joined by his fiancee, Angela Mason, and his mother, Cola Mae McClellan.last_img read more