Thursday, August 19, 2010

Indy Star Reports on Kole Campaign

Indianapolis Star reporter Carrie Ritchie interviewed me recently about the campaign and about Hamilton County politics. Here's a link to the report.
Though Republicans have a strong grip on county offices, Kole thinks he can take some votes from Levine on Nov. 2.

"I think I'm a little more aggressively fiscally conservative and I can step to the right on economic issues," Kole said.

Kole worries the county spends too much money and believes it could make deeper cuts, especially now that it's struggling to balance its budget.
The budget and number of county employees has always been too high. Now that the county cannot afford to keep a bloated payroll, it should be obvious to anyone that the time to cut deeply is now.


FishersDemo said...

Mike, since you are running for office in the Fishers- Fall Creek Township area, and obviously live there, I would ask your opinions on two issues:

1. Do you think Fishers should remain a town, or become a City, with a Mayor elected by the people?

2. What are your thoughts on the Fishers - Fall Creek Township "merger" presently under discussion?

Mike Kole said...

1. I am not in favor of becoming a City with a Mayor, for it adds an executive layer of government, and as we've seen in Carmel and Westfield, it leads to expensive pet projects the councils never would have dreamed up. The bonding has gotten out of hand in Carmel, and is headed there in Westfield. I don't want that for Fishers.

But I do think there should be a compromise on the Town-City question: Remain a Town, but eliminate the at-large voting of Town Councilors, and redraw the districts to be geographical, rather than something that protects the seated Councilors. Right now, you can run for Town Council and take 100% of the votes in your district, and still lose in a landslide. At-Large voting is done to protect the dominant party, and for no other reason. We've seen a County Commissioner lose in his district but win the election by virtue of being carried by the rest of the county's voters who do not have to interact with him.

2. I am a Delaware Twp Fishers resident, but do have some thoughts. I am wary of mergers because they consolidate power in fewer hands, and make government more remote and less accountable. I am not aware that this merger would eliminate any of the services or functions. If it did, I would be more inclined to favor a merger. The experience of mergers or elimination of Township government has thus far not shown a cost savings, and in fact has shown cost increases. The elimination of the Township Assessors in favor of County Assessor is a case in point.

Thanks for inquiring!