Possible Change for November Ballot

Published 08/27 2014 02:43PM

Updated 08/27 2014 02:55PM

An important issue on the ballot this November, possibly switching from a panel of three County Commissioners in Allen County to just one Elected Official. 

WFFT's Rohma Siddiqui has more on the pros and cons of this possible change in the model of our county government.

"We are no longer in the 1820's when people are sitting on their front porch watching the horses go by."

Nelson Peters, Allen County Commissioner First District, says we are still in a war for jobs and the central focus of reorganizing of this county government model is jobs.  He says switching to a single election official will expedite decision making.

"The referendum is going to be on the November 4th ballot asking Allen County voters if they want to chance the current model of Allen County government."

It will be essentially 4 and 1/2 years before new people are seated in the election of 2018.  It will be decided who the Single County Executive will be beginning January 1st beginning 2019.

Could this change give too much authority to one individual?

"I'm here to tell you right now, the Allen County Commissioners and most of the commissioners throughout the state are vested with both executive and legislative authority."

Peters argues this change will actually create the possibility of better representation for people in smaller communities.

Therese Brown, All County Commissioner Second District, however sees some flaws in the Single County Executive Referendum.

"There's a lot of holes that are in this particular piece."

Brown argues that voters like to feel connected locally with public officials and a single official is simply not as accessible to everyone.

"It's more of, again philosophical situation, now yes we're touting that 1824 this and a 150 years ago things were the way they were, but don't you think our founding fathers of the state of Indiana wanted debate?"

Ron Turpin, Board Chair of Fort Wayne INC, wants voters to educate themselves on the issue before they step into the voting booth.

"It's the first in the state so it's different and people's natural inclination is to say no anytime there's change, so the education process has to happen."

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