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Thumbs down: Basketball or books?

The city's Capital Improvement Board (CIB) wants to hand over a second sum of $10 million to the Simon Family for operating costs at Conseco Fieldhouse – part of a $33.5 bailout struck by the city last summer. That second installment is up for approval at the City-County Council. As a vocal public has (rightly) pointed out, there are myriad other ways the cash-strapped city could use that money right now. So what will it be, Indy? Basketball or books? Decisions, decisions.

Thumbs up: Rundell Ernstberger honored

The Indiana Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architectsawarded Rundell Ernstberger Associates with the Award for Excellence on Friday, Oct. 8 for their work on designing the Efroymson Conservation Center. This is not the first time the Efroymson Conservation Center, which serves as The Nature Conservancy's Indianapolis headquarters, has worked with Rundell Ernstberger. Previously, the two teamed up to create the center's award-winning storm water management system, which keeps some 650,000 gallons of storm water out of the city's combined overflow sewer system each year.

Thumbs down: Way to go, Indy

Grab your children and lock your doors, Indianapolis. According to a new Forbes study, Indy has distinguished itself as one of the Top Ten Most Dangerous Cities in America. Based on a compilation of data taken from a variety of sources, including information from the FBI regarding violent crime rates and traffic fatality data from the Department of Transportation, Indianapolis has won itself the dubious honor of a solid 8th place on the totem pole. Indy's ranking puts us in the company of other such illustrious cities like Detroit, Miami, Tulsa and Memphis, Tenn., which tops the list.

Thumbs down: Texting teens wreak havoc

Watch out this month: The drive home from the haunted house might be scarier than the spooks you've left behind. State Farm recently released claims data that shows October is the most dangerous month for teen drivers -- a full 15 percent more than other monthly averages. Why October? It isn't really clear. But a major reason behind teen accidents is texting-while-driving, which some 57 percent of teens admit doing. Indiana has banned cell phone use for drivers under 18, but any law that relies on the snap, subjective age judgments of a cop in a passing car won't be as effective as a comprehensive ban.

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