Friday, January 30, 2009


For the first time, abortion would become an entitlement the government must fund and promote. Citizens would lose the freedom they now have to enact even modest regulation of the abortion industry.

FOCA would:

* Eliminate regulations that protect women from unsafe clinics and unscrupulous abortionists

* Force American taxpayers to fund abortions

* Force every state to allow partial-birth abortions- it's sponsors have said a primary purpose of the bill is to ensure that killing partially born children will again be permitted nationwide

* Run roughshod over the conscience rights of physicians, nurses and hospitals that oppose abortion on religious, moral or ethical grounds

* Strip parents of their right and responsibility to be involved in their right and responsibility to be involved in their minor daughter's abortion decision.

Freedom Of Speech believes FOCA [Freedom of Choice Act] is without doubt the most radical abortion legislation ever considered in the United States!

Abortion supporters have been trying to pass FOCA since 1989 and now we have a Congress more disposed than any in recent years to pass the bill, and a new President who has said he will sign the measure into law.

Your voice is needed more than ever!

At this time of serious national challenges, Americans should unite to serve the good of all, born and unborn, not single out the most defenseless human beings for an expanded attack on their lives.

What our readers can do:

Make a phone call: U.S. Capital switchboard: 202-234-3121 ask for the offices of your Representative Baron Hill and two senators, Richard Lugar and Evan Bath.

Baron Hill's Washington Office at: 202-225-5315
Jeffersonville office at: 812-288-3999
Fax: 281-288-3873
Toll free at: 1-866-440-1321

Richard Lugar's Washington office at: 202-224-4814, fax: 202-228-0360

Evan Bayh's Washington office at: 202-224-5623, fax: 202-228-1377
Jeffersonville office at: 812-218-2317
Fax: 812-218-2370

Please urge your federal elected officials to oppose FOCA or any similar measures, and to retain laws against the federal funding and promotion of abortion.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


Dear Senator Bayh,

Last week, the Obama Administration asked for the authority to access the remaining $350,000 billion from the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP):

Without a report on quantifiable results from the initial $350 billion, and a guarantee that greater transparency and accountability, measures are in place so taxpayers can see how our tax dollars are being spent.

We taxpayers of New Albany, Indiana ask you to draw back the dark veil of secrecy that is around TARP.

"TARP was intended to prevent further peril in our financial markets and help all American taxpayers survive the downturn and get back on their feet.

But with a $1.2 trillion deficit now staring down on the American people, taxpayers deserve better assurances that any more government spending, either through the TARP or an $825 billion spending bill being discussed, will be used effectively."

Freedom Of Speech Staff

Contact information:

Senator Evan Bayh
131 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510

Freedom Of Speech suggest that our readers contact: Senator Evan Bayh and voice your opinion about the TARP and stimulus package.

Sunday, January 25, 2009


Last year, Indiana made a great start towards permanent property tax reduction. So far House Bill 1001 has reduced homeowners property taxes payable in 2008 by more than 30 percent across the 75 counties that put out tax bills.

This is remarkable achievement and is the largest tax cut in the history of Indiana. It marks the true beginning of less reliance on property tax by local government and lower bills for the taxpayer.

Now, we must pass Senate Joint Resolution 1, the constitutional cap that guarantees property-tax reduction will be permanent for all classes of taxpayers.

By passing the resolution in the General Assembly this year, it goes to the voter next 2010 for approval. An advantage to the legislature's passing it in 2009 is that it gives local units of government time to prepare for the change.

They either can cut expenses, combine services, to cover their costs, instead of using property taxes.

Last year HB 1001 passed 119-27, a large majority.

Some want to defer passing the resolution for another year, to "see what the impact is."

This is a disguised argument against making limits on property taxes permanent. We already know what the impact will be on local government and they have been given the options to deal with it. They should be planning now for the day when reliance on property tax is reduced.

Instead, they are hoping for some reversal of this decision so they can go back to higher property taxes every year.

The appeal to the Distressed Unit Board, has produced only five appeals so far out of the thousands of local units relying on property taxes in the State of Indiana.

Malysz has argued against the form of the circuit breakers - 1 percent to homeowners, 2 percent to other residential and farmland, and 3 percent to business.

The reason for the disparity is that homeowners are paying the lions share of the replacement taxes - the additional 1 percent on sales tax, so we have earned the relief.

Business under the plan get $220 million tax cut in 2010, even though corporations are exempt from most sales tax. Business will have the only constitutional protection in the United States under this plan.

Indiana is already rated in the top 10 for it's business tax environment and this constitutional guarantee will enhance that position and allow businesses a sense of certainty about property tax liability going forward.
Why does it need to be in the Indiana Constitution?

Because history shows that the reforms of today will be washed away tomorrow unless the taxpayers and voters themselves are in control of the decision.

More than 30 states have some form of cap, and more than 20 have it in their constitution.

Freedom Of Speech would like to say:

Let the voters decide. Call, or email your legislators now and let them know that you want SJR1 passed this session so that we can get on with permanent tax relief, and so that local government will quit stalling and prepare for the future with the tools they have been given.

Saturday, January 24, 2009


Dear Freedom of Speech Staff Members,

As we take the next steps in our journey, I know you'll be right there with me, as always, in my heart and by my side. Thank you for such warm wishes, God bless you, and may God bless America.

Secretary of State
Hillary Rodham Clinton

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


To our Madame Secretary
Hillary Rodham Clinton:

This is a day of rejoicing and blessing for your postion as Secretary of State.

You make us proud to have you represent us.

Your unwavering committment to serve our country gives America's villages and villages around the world with a new day, a new beginning of hope, peace, joy and democracy.

May God keep you safe as you work to bring peace and harmony between people of many nations with varying needs and challenges.

May you be guided by the inspiring love of your 18 million as you embark on this new journey under the same moon and stars over looking the different localities around the world.

Freedom Of Speech Staff

Sunday, January 18, 2009


Dear Freedom Of Speech,

I would like to address your readers not only as a concerned city employee but also as a concerned city taxpayer.

With the economy the way it is and the fact that there was a "freeze" put on salaries, there should not be raises given to just 2 non-bargaining employees.

I am concerned that if the council approves the pay raises of ONLY 2 city employees that they are discriminating against the other estimated 50 non-bargaining city employees.

Although a freeze is in effect, the unions were given a 1% longevity raise whereas the non-bargaining employees were denied this.

It has been stated that these 2 employees will be taking on more duties as the city re-assumes the billing of the sewage and trash. When the Sewer billing was contracted out and therefore the workload reduced substantially there was not a "DECREASE" in pay, so the logic of giving a raise for doing what those positions use to do does not make sense.

I don't think that just because a department takes in additional duties requires certain employees in that department to get a raise and others not.

It is apparent that there is a lot of "PICKING AND CHOOSING" going on when it comes to raises and therefore others are being discriminated against.

As a matter of record a city employee passed away about a year ago and the bulk the work load and paperwork has been assumed by the controller's office. Not once has the controller's office asked for compensation for having to take on these extra duties.

Yet these 2 sewer office employees were given a 20% and 7% raise in 2007 when the rest of the non-bargaining employees got a measly 3% raise.

And now these same 2 employees are requesting a 22% and 12% increase in pay respectively.

Where does the justification come from?

Anytime any other department takes on additional work this same additional work flows into the Controller's office. The Controller's office is the only office in the city that handles paperwork from ALL other departments and it is done with minimal problems and little or no complaints.

These 4 employees in the Controller's office have over 65 years of employment with the city. That's a lot of dedicated work and service to the city, and 2 of these employees started their employment in the sewer office so they are very much aware of how that office operates.

Patti Byerley

Freedom Of Speech would like to say:

We feel that it is unfair if the City of New Albany does not apply the same rules for all employees salaries. Is it true the New Albany billing office has been contracting an outside firm to do the mailing of utility bills?

Is the current New Albany billing staff keeping up to date with filing liens to collect delinquent bills? Does this staff still have the authority to forgive or reduce utility bills?

Thursday, January 15, 2009


This Wednesday Mayor England had an illegal meeting in his office with City Council members Bob Caesar and Steve Price. Also attending this meeting were Deputy Mayor Carl Malysz, City Attorney Shane Gibson, along with Fire Dept. and Union Representatives and Fire Chief Matt Juliot.

The subjects of the discussions and meeting were:

1. closing of 13th Street Firehouse.

2. ambulance service changes in our city.

Mr. Mayor, why don't you and City Attorney Gibson read Indiana Code?

IC 5-14-1.5 "OPEN DOOR LAW"

IC 5-14-1.5-1 "official action", "be conducted openly"

IC 5-14-1.5-2 (b)

(b) Governing body means any 2 or more individuals

(d) Official action means to:

(1) Receive information

(2) Deliberate

(5) Make decisions

IC 5-14-1.5-4

* Posting an agenda of meeting

IC 5-14-1.5-5

* Public Notice of meetings 48 hours before the meeting

To: Mayor Doug England,

The word "official action means to receive information, deliberate, make recommendations, establish policy, make decisions, or to take final action."

All meetings of the governing body of a public agency must be open at all times for the purpose of permitting members of the public to observe and record them. Indian Code 3-14-1.5-3(a)

There are several examples Mayor England, of what meetings are and what it means to take public action set forth on pages seven and eight of the Public Access Counselor's "Handbook on Indiana's Public Access Laws."

We also suggest that you start following Indiana Law and STOP having illegal/secret meetings Mr. England!

Councilmen Caesar and Price, why did you participate in this illegal meeting?

Mr. Mayor, why did you NOT post this meeting?

Sunday, January 11, 2009


Well one year down and three to go.

Do you get the feeling we are dealing with a mayor who is stuck in the 1990's?

For someone who ran his campaign for Mayor on the promise of change, we sure haven't seen about you?

Have you readers said to yourself anytime last year, how in the hell did England ever get elected again?

Every other week England is trying to find ways to raise fees, spend taxpayers money, but in the next breath the New Albany Stormwater Board approved a raise for two employees Thursday.

The increases would be a $7,000 raise this year and a promotion to utility billing director for Kelly Welsh. That would bring her salary to $38,000 annually, plus benefits.

April Dickey would be promoted from account clerk to assistant utility manager, which would include a raise of $3,000.

First of all, be glad you both have a job with benefits. There are 2.6 million people out of work right now.

Second Ms. Welch, do you realize you would be making more than an elected officials in several departments, who spent thousands of dollars and campaigned their butts off to get elected?

Thirdly, our council voted "not to give any city employees a pay raise" in 2009.

If in-house billing did not work in the 90's why do you think it will work now?

Now residents are stuck with two bills, two checks and two stamps!

Why is Ron Carroll pushing for salary increases for Kelly and April in the billing office?

Raises our ass, no one down in that City County Building deserve salary increases when our city is in such a mess.

Good grief, don't any of you know what public service is?

"Mr. Mayor you and your cronies need to look at the big picture of: Where are we? How did we get here? What is your plan to get us out of this mess?"

Mr. Mayor, don't bank on the Obama stimulus package reaching your hands.

We still believe as strongly today that you, Mr. Mayor just don't get it.

Louisville, Jeffersonville, Sellersburg, Clarksville and Charlestown are down sizing and cutting back and New Albany isn't !

We wish for once in the history of this City of New Albany, that a mayor would stand before the citizens and tell the truth, the whole truth, nothing but the truth so help you God...that our city is in trouble.

This council didn't balance the budget, they took our Rainy Day Fund and cut some departments and claim the budget is balanced.

At that same council meeting our Controller said we have NO money to pay the RENT on the City County Building for next year, nor money for overtime for our Fire Department and we'll be back wanting the council to appropriate money for this.

Hell, if we can't afford the rent on the City County Building, and overtime for the NAFD, how can we afford a big $7,000 and $3,000 raise for those two billing office employees?

This just convinces us at Freedom Of Speech and our readers even more of how "out of touch" you really are Mr. Mayor!

Thursday, January 08, 2009


Our local, state and federal governments need to be smaller and more effective. not larger and less efficient. As we've argued before and will argue again big government isn't just expensive and inefficient; it's corrupting.

Like we said, big government breeds big corruption.

The four things to look for in the stimulus package:

1. How does it affect small businesses and the self-employed?

2. How are entrepreneurial start-ups supported and encouraged?

3. Does the plan maximize the rate of investment in U.S. companies?

4. Does the package encourage growth in productivity?

Will democrats honor "No Earmarks Pledge?"

The biggest boost the economy could get would be a cut to the corporate tax.

We have the second-highest by some accounts, the highest after certain considerations) corporate tax rates on earth.

Make no mistake, their is nothing "progressive" about corporate taxes. They hurt the consumer, they hurt the employee, and they kill businesses of EVERY kind.

Now, that stimulus crap, on the other hand, if Federal spending was good for the economy we would be in the biggest boom of all time.

A tax credit, given to those who pay little or no tax is not a tax cut. Especially when the so-called cut is included in a bill that will increase spending somewhere in the neighborhood of 1 Trillion dollars. It would be more appropriate to call it a one time welfare check.

A cynical person might even call it quid pro quo for votes already cast.

A true tax cut consists of legislation, which would decrease the individual and corporate tax percentage with the force of law. This would provide a stable platform for the economy to rebuild.

Printing money is NO way to cut taxes. It is an underhanded way to fool people. Smart people will not be fooled, and the tax cut that is NO tax cut, will go nowhere!

Like we said, big government breeds big corruption!

Tuesday, January 06, 2009


Five Democratic governors are asking the federal government for a $1 trillion bailout package, including $250 billion for education and $150 billion in middle tax cuts.

Our Founding Fathers were clear and deliberate in setting up a system whereby the federal government would only step in for that which states cannot do themselves.

We'd humbly suggest that Congress take a page from this taxpayer playbooks by focusing on targeted tax relief paid for by cutting spending, not borrowing.

Freedom Of Speech would like to say:

We'd like to be bailed out too! Who do we present our case to?

We are average American taxpayers being totally overwhelmed by people expecting us to bail them out.

We figure $1 billion should cover our loses in this federal bailout of crooks and scondrels.

Everyone - please write your elected officials and tell them that you support the "Freedom Of Speech bailout." Tell them that we are average Americans who are just too big to fail!

"If this is the new American way then count us in too...Bail us out!"

Sunday, January 04, 2009


Dear Freedom Of Speech,

It is with great honor that I have accepted the appointment as the new Commissioner of the Department of Local Government by Mitch Daniels.

I also look forward to meeting those of you whom I have not yet met and forming partnerships that can make a difference in the lives of you taxpayers we serve in the communities and state we love.

In putting taxpayers first, we will ensure that the policies we set are with the best interest of the taxpayers in mind and protect the taxpayers from unequal and unjust assessments and taxation.

By respecting local control, we will provide oversight of the assessment and budget functions, hold local officials accountable to state standards.

Thank you for your service and dedication to your community. I look forward to hearing from you. You may reach me via e-mail at

Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions, concerns or comments about local government.


Timothy J. Rushenberg