Saturday, July 08, 2017

A money-saving proposal!

So, with a good chunk of my adopted home state lying athwart the area of the country known as "The Rust Belt", it's probably no surprise that Indiana punches slightly above its weight in drug overdose deaths.

From 2011 to 2013, Indiana had the fifteenth highest rate of deaths from drug overdoses among U.S. states, at sixteen per hundred thousand Hoosiers. We're only the seventeenth most populous state, and hardly a hotbed of hedonism and other assorted whoop-te-do, but the nation's overdose center of gravity seems to have shifted.

The most statistically common place to go on a final nod these days is not a trendy loft in Soho, but rather in a split-level midwestern ranch a few blocks down from the shuttered wheel bearing factory, or a single-wide in the mobile home park across the tracks from the defunct curtain rod plant.

Anyway, Indiana has decided to open five more Opioid Addiction Treatment Centers in various small cities around the state.

One of these small cities is Lafayette, which is a city I'd think was doing pretty good, economically speaking. They've got the Subaru plant, Caterpillar, TRW, and others, as well as being right across the river from the sprawling Purdue University campus.

Another reason I'd think they were doing pretty good is that they apparently want to build a new $16M dollar home for their Lafayette Aviators, a Prospect League team.

Funding for this new pine tar cathedral is supposed to come from the local Economic Development Income Tax. I think this shows a lack of imagination. Why not glom onto some of that sweet state payola for the Opioid Addiction Treatment Center and build a dual-purpose facility? You could employ the inpatient addicts to hawk peanuts and take tickets during game times, and as groundskeepers between games, as long as nobody tried to snort the third base line.

The junkies could learn a trade and the ball park gets cheap labor. You could bunk them down in the press box or the visiting team's clubhouse.

Multi-use developments are all the rage these days, anyway.