Candidate Statement, Richard Martin, County Council

Dear Monroe County Democratic Party and Central Committee Members,

I ask you to support my selection for the County Council member-at-large vacancy. My experience and dedicated leadership in the affairs of County government over the past 40 years, both as activist and appointed official, give me the knowledge and demonstrated skills necessary to serve on the County Council. Having recently retired, I now have even more time and energy to devote to public service.

I started working for the Monroe County Democratic Party almost 50 years ago by canvasing and registering voters, and then volunteering with the IU Voters Union to identify highly qualified candidates for office. My concern for water quality led me into planning and zoning activism, leadership with Quality Growth, an environmentally oriented non-governmental organization, the Monroe County Lakes Task Force and eventually to an appointment on both the City of Bloomington Plan Commission and more recently the Monroe County Plan Commission where I twice served as president. Along the way I have served on the Monroe County Economic Development Authority, Monroe County Board of Zoning Appeals, Bloomington Monroe County Metropolitan Planning Organization, and now serve on the Monroe County Redevelopment Commission. I also have served as a Judge or Inspector at our polls for many years. While most of my experience is directly related to the planning and zoning functions of local government, the pervasiveness of land use decisions on the lives of our residents resulted in my involvement with most departments of County government.

By professional background, I am a systems analyst and systems integrator. For over 35 years my company successfully helped Indiana companies, both large and small, manage the evolution of information technologies into their operations and supply chain activities. I hold professional memberships with the Association for Computing Machinery, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Society of Manufacturing Engineers, and International Council on Systems Engineering. I have responsibilities with the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) as a working group leader, US representative and head of delegation for the Technical Committee on Automation Systems and Integration.

The County Council will need to make critical decisions in the next few years regarding support for many aspects of County governance including: escalation in justice system costs for detention and treatment as County population continues to increase; assurance of adequate health care and social services for all in need; completion of planning and zoning ordinance revision and support for resulting residential and commercial challenges and opportunities; development of public/private partnerships to enable high quality, reasonably priced infrastructure; continued professionalization of county jobs demanding greater skill levels to increase effectiveness and efficiency; and careful assessment of shifting revenue streams and revenue levels to maintain support for essential services and commitments to our community.

The fiscal authority and responsibility of the County Council to oversee expenditures of taxpayer dollars makes this position important to every Monroe County resident. I have been involved in many diverse activities supported by the Council and understand the impact Council decisions have on the lives and well-being of our County's employees and County residents. To support its budgetary responsibilities, the County Council appoints its own members and citizens to a wide variety of Boards and Commissions that manage many of the County's operations. This participation is a substantial part of Council membership and offers the Council member greater understanding of the many issues that budgeted activities seek to address. For many years I participated with Council members serving in that capacity and can quickly engage with knowledge and experience in many of those responsibilities. I have a strong history of service to Monroe County and a strong desire to continue that service to my community as an At-Large member of the Monroe County Council. I am committed to seeking a full four-year term in 2020.

When you consider your vote for the person to fill this County Council at-large vacancy, please consider my wealth of experience and continuing dedication to serve the best interests of Monroe County residences. Much of that experience involved making very difficult decisions about controversial land use. Over the years I've received numerous comments of overwhelming support for the positions I championed and votes I cast. I know how to represent the public in the public processes of governance. I know how to make Monroe County prosper without sacrificing the values we share for sense of place.

Thank you,

Richard Martin

812.336.7400

tinwisle@bloomington.in.us

 

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