This week’s historic elections have everyone talking (and tweeting, posting, you name it); while there’s plenty to say about the national contests, our focus is closer to home: Across Central Indiana, you helped make it a good night for the candidates and causes supported by the Indy Chamber – starting with a monumental victory for mass transit.
But even though Marion County spoke up for better transit, we have to make the vote count in the City-County Council. And while almost all our endorsed candidates came out on top, the business community has to keep pushing for continued progress in our schools and good policy at the Statehouse. Let’s review what happened, and what’s next:
Historic win for mass transit:
The transit referendum (Question 2) won a resounding victory across Marion County; with nearly 60% of the vote, the results show a true “movement for mobility.”
By supporting a dedicated revenue source for IndyGo, voters endorsed a mass transit system with more convenient service, all-day schedules, extended routes and new rapid transit lines. The plan would triple the number of people and nearly double total employment within a half-mile of frequent bus service; given the chance to vote “yes,” the public demanded a better transit system by a wide margin.
One more vote:
The City-County Council still must approve the full quarter-percent tax that voters embraced to implement all the Marion County Transit Plan. We believe there is bipartisan support for mass transit, but even with momentum from the referendum we can’t take this final step for granted.
Help us tell the City-County Council that their constituents – people and employers – want to invest in practical access to jobs, education and daily necessities for themselves and their neighbors. (Find your City-County Councillor.) We’ll be in touch in the next several days with referendum results by district and more specifics on outreach and the timing of the Council vote.
Chamber-endorsed candidates earn overwhelming victories:
Along with a major win for transit, the Indy Chamber’s endorsed candidates swept into office across the region and state. We supported 43 candidates for IPS School Board and the Indiana General Assembly, and 42 earned victories. (Central Indiana results can be found at the end of this message.)
Our take on these successful races:
Voters urge continued reform in IPS:
Voters in the core of Marion County want progress on transit and education, casting their ballots to continue the positive trajectory in the Indianapolis Public Schools. Chamber-endorsed candidates Michael O’Connor, Diane Arnold and Venita Moore earned three of the four seats up for election on the IPS board, maintaining a pro-reform majority overseeing the state’s largest school district. We look forward to supporting continued innovation and improvement in IPS.
General Assembly ready to consider pro-growth priorities:
Every legislative candidate supported by the Indy Chamber was elected or re-elected. We congratulate Governor-elect Eric Holcomb and incoming Lieutenant Governor Suzanne Crouch, and look forward to working with returning and incoming allies in the 2017 session of the General Assembly.
Based on your input, we’re preparing a legislative agenda focused on early childhood education, long-term transportation funding solutions and other economic development priorities – stay tuned for more details.
As the electoral dust settles and second-guessing turns to speculation, Tuesday’s message for Indy’s business community is simple: Let’s keep moving!
2016 Indy Chamber-endorsed Candidates:
Sam Odle (At-Large)
Michael O'Connor (District 1)
Venita Moore (District 2)
Diane Arnold (District 4)
Indiana General Assembly Endorsements: (Central Indiana)
Donna Shaibley (R) - HD 24
Melanie Wright (D) - HD 35
Terri Jo Austin (D) - HD 36
Todd Huston (R) - HD 37
Jerry Torr (R) - HD 39
Tim Brown (R) - HD 41
Sean Eberhart (R) - HD 57
Chris May (R) - HD 65
Ed Delaney (D) - HD 86
Carey Hamilton (D) - HD 87
Brian Bosma (R) - HD 88
Cindy Kirchhofer (R) - HD 89
Bob Behning (R) - HD 91
Karlee Macer (D) - HD 92
Cherrish Pryor (D) - HD 94
Greg Porter (D) - HD 96
Justin Moed (D) - HD 97
Robin Shackleford (D) - HD 98
Dan Forestal (D) - HD 100
David Long (R) - SD 16
Luke Kenley (R) - SD 20
Tim Lanane (D) - SD 25
John Ruckelshaus (R) - SD 30
Greg Taylor (D) - SD 33
Italics – new members for 2017