Issues

I believe that in order to move Charlestown Forward we have to put Charlestown First.

My platform is based on the core pledges to…

  • Protect Private Property Rights
  • Practice Fiscal Responsibility 
  • Foster Community Cohesion
  • Protect Charlestown Families and Citizens 

Details of my platform include my commitment to the following action steps:

Financial Accountability

  • Review Charlestown’s use of TIF districts to ensure TIF money is used in accordance with state law and to the full benefit of citizens. Read why we need this: TIF Abuse in Charlestown
  • Restore payroll allotment to its proper place in the General Fund and stop paying city employees from TIF funds.
  • Prioritize city maintenance and development projects based on NEEDS before WANTS.
  • Increase public access to records and budget information.
  • Encourage development and growth that does not negatively affect the city’s revenue stream and offers community resources for all of Charlestown’s residents.

Infrastructure

  • Allocate funds for infrastructure improvements equitably across all Charlestown neighborhoods.
  • Evaluate drainage problems and develop a plan to address issues by prioritizing those that are most severe. Learn more here: MS4 Community Designation
  • Conduct a thorough audit of public safety features in all city neighborhoods in coordination with residents to assess the need for updated street signs, lights, speed limit and stop signs, etc.
  • Follow through on improvements long overdue to Charlestown’s water. *As of 01/02/2018 the sale of the utility has been approved. It is imperative to hold Indiana American Water accountable for repairing the water system and ensure that all of Charlestown has clean, fresh water available in their homes. 

Recreation

  • Conduct an audit of all City parks and current recreation areas to determine frequency of use, financial stability, and possibilities for expansion.
  • Open all city parks seven days a week
  • Perform an assessment of the existing civic center to determine if the building can be salvaged and reopened to the public for a broad range of athletic opportunities.
  • Create a Parks Board to oversee operation and development of recreation areas with citizen involvement.
  • Explore opportunities to partner with Charlestown State Park and sister communities for long-term improvements to Charlestown’s recreational opportunities.
  • Assess current festival celebrations to determine how they can be expanded to include more local retailers and residents while attracting out-of-town guests.

Social Services

  • Explore partnerships with local charitable organizations and work with the Charlestown Township Trustee to help serve as a conduit through which citizens facing emergent needs or crisis can find assistance.
  • Open the A&E center free of charge for meetings of community based organizations that function for the health, safety, and well-being of Charlestown citizens.
  • Promote education initiatives by identifying public study spaces and improving public wi-fi for online and distance learners.
  • Expand existing After-School study, play, and mentor programs with local elementary and middle schools to help working parents.
  • Appoint a Legislative Youth Advisor from among our high school students to help represent the interests of young people in our community. Learn more about that plan here: Legislative Youth Advisor
  • Encourage and support public support groups for families in crisis due to addiction and the rising opioid abuse epidemic. Click here for more information: Taking on the Opioid Crisis
  • Fully fund and support the Charlestown Police Department in a community policing initiative that builds staff levels and increases the availability of officers on patrol. Learn more here: Funding our PD  
  • Create a public safe space under video surveillance for private sales transactions and custody exchanges. 

Transparency

  • Increase public access to monthly financial reports and include data about city debt and spending.
  • Provide live video streaming of all public meetings via the city’s social media platform.
  • Expand public notification of all public meeting dates and agendas.
  • Introduce the Community Table concept by hosting quarterly public town hall meetings during which citizens can share their ideas and concerns with the Mayor. Read more about this: Welcome to the Table!
  • Request monthly updates during regularly scheduled Common Council meetings from all Council Members regarding the status and concerns of their districts.
  • Request a revision of Resolution 2016-R-3 to make public comment at meetings of the Common Council more accessible for citizens.

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Paid for by the Committee to Elect Treva Hodges