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$6 million in city funds approved for controversial Blue Indy project

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - $6 million of city funds has been approved to pay for part of the Blue Indy car share project. The money was signed off on by the city’s Board of Public Works Wednesday.

But there are major concerns now by some city officials over why city funding is being spent on a project taxpayers haven’t approved.

There was already concern by some City County Council members over why the city was participating in this car share program. Now, $6 million of city funds are going towards that project, without the approval of the city county council.

Blue Indy docking stations are already up across downtown and cars are already coming in. But now some city lawmakers are trying to pull the emergency brake.

“The question is where will we get the $6 million to pay back the money from that loan that’s the real question,” said City-County Councilmember Zach Adamson.

Adamson wants to know why City County Council, which is responsible for spending city dollars, wasn’t considered when the Mayor’s office signed the multi-million dollar deal with Blue Indy.

$6 million was approved Wednesday by the city’s Board of Public Works to pay for installation of new docking stations.

“The council is made up of 29 members, there are republicans and democrats, and the wide consensus from the council is that this arrangement, this contract is illegitimate on the best of days… That should give every resident of Marion County cold chills just thinking about that,” said Adamson.

The car share program is massive, with 1,000 docking stations at 200 sites for 500 cars slated to go in across the city.

Not every public works board member wanted to see the money spent though. Gregory Garrett was one of two votes against approving the $6 million for the project.

“We’re putting in batteries, we’re putting in electricity, it’s not just a bike rack, it’s much more intensive and in the end the taxpayers are just going to have to ask themselves is this really worth it?” asked Garrett.

Some of the Blue Indy cars are parked illegally according to Adamson. The City County Council Public Works Committee has ordered those cars parked illegally, be towed.

The mayor's office maintains they were within their authority to sign the Blue Indy agreement and that the project will provide clean, affordable transit to thousands across the city.