Statement of Mayor Tom Henry at the City-County Space Utilization Task Force Meeting

Statement from Fort Wayne Mayor Tom Henry:

Statement of Mayor Tom Henry at the City-County Space Utilization Task Force Meeting – March 26, 2010

Note: At today’s meeting, the task force gave its unanimous support for Fort Wayne and Allen County government co-location with public safety in the City-County Building and the development and management teams in 200 E. Berry St.

I would like to thank each member of the task force, and John Stafford, our moderator, for your hard work and commitment to finding a solution to our mutual space needs.

As part of my original invitation, a simple charge was set forth:

  1. To find a plan using the City-County Building and 200 East Berry Street that would best serve the public and bring City and County governments together;
  2. and to find a way to fund it.

I’m feeling good about where we are today. We have met our goals. We found a way to achieve full co-location. And we found a way to pay for it and stay within our budgets. Together, we truly are stronger.

With the plan to put both public safety departments in the City-County Building and our development and management teams in 200 East Berry Street, we will be able to come together as a community, make things easier for our residents and make local government work better. Of equal importance, we will have rolled out the welcome mat for new jobs and business development by creating a one-stop shop for economic growth.

In terms of space use and functionality, it will be a full co-location plan. The plan advanced with sincerity by Councilman Moss would have us paying nearly the same amount to achieve a very limited form of co-location that would close the door on greater cooperation and cost savings in the future, and shortchange us in our ability to compete in the 21st-century economy.

With the new data from the architects on the base plan, we have validation that the resources already identified will be sufficient to get the job done. The dollars appropriated by City Council meet the City’s contribution. And the $3 million pledged by County Council plus the additional $1 million that I offered for the new police lab meet the County’s portion of the tab. Taken together, we have the resources we need right now to move forward on the full, basic co-location plan. We have met the challenge.

I said at the start that I was confident the task force could find an answer, one that would better serve the public, use our resources wisely and help us to grow – one that would reaffirm our sense of community and create lasting value.

We are one community. And my friends, together, we are stronger. Let’s seize this moment and move forward with the plan for full co-location. Let’s come together now, build on our strengths and make great things happen for our entire community.

Webmaster’s note: This post was added on April 21, 2010 at 6:52 pm.

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