Mc Coy: Why City Council?

Announcement from the Mc Coy for City Council campaign:

Why City Council?

I have always been a quiet, thinking type of person, more content to stay in the background and work at solving problems; thus, my career as a Systems Analyst and Accountant.

I have always been interested in politics and government. I have been civic minded ever since my days in the Cub Scouts and the Civics classes that used to be required in school. I always felt some king of obligation to do something, if not for the country or state, then for local community. I had always felt as though I would retire from my career and perhaps run for some office at that time. Because of irresponsible spending and failed economic policies at all levels of government, my career and retirement plans have drastically changed.

Like a lot of other people, I am mad, fed up and stepping up to do something about the

Fort Wayne is now some $400 million in debt. By the time we elect a responsible mayor who will address the sewer crisis (before the cost balloons again), we will be looking at perhaps more than $600 million. When you add the school board debts, it will not be long before the citizens of Fort Wayne are strapped with a $billion of debt.

This debt crisis partly explains why businesses are leaving Fort Wayne and it is difficult to find companies that want to move or expand to the city.

Everyone is well aware of the national economic crisis that was brought about by the same kind of “tax and spend” policies that have decimated this city. Jobs have not just left the city, they have left the country. So it is difficult to place all of the blame squarely on this floundering administration and the Mayor’s rubber stamp men who serve on the city council.

BUT – and this is a really big BUT

The state of IN is in better shape than most of the rest of the country. Our surrounding area, although struggling, is still faring better. It is Fort Wayne that is failing.

As much as I would love to sit here and blame the all those liberal democrats, they have had some help. So I am also deeply disappointed with those in my own party who have played a role in creating this mess. In this campaign, I need to not only speak out in opposition to the failed policies of the democrats, but also separate myself from policies that came out of my own party. I wish I could stand up today, look the voters in the eye and say that I am a new or different kind of Republican. But they have heard that before. What I want to tell the voters today is that I am an old school republican.

I don’t want just a balanced budget. I want meaningful spending cuts and the debt situation addressed, with an eye towards later tax cuts, when doing so will be more responsible.

The days of Fort Wayne as an industrial center are sadly over. But that doesn’t mean that we should just sit around talking about how wonderful Fort Wayne was when Harvester was here.

Fort Wayne is a city of resources. We have colleges like Indiana Tech and St Francis that is growing and we have IPFW. But we also have what is known as the brain drain – students graduating and leaving the area to find jobs. That should not be. We have the Innovation Center, The Alliance and other economic development organizations that are fighting to create a stronger economy. We also have a population of people that not only want to go to work, but are screaming and fighting and demanding jobs. What we don’t have is the leadership from City Hall to make it all happen.

I bought my current home 15 years ago after a job assignment brought me to Fort Wayne. When that job ended, I was forced to take a job in PA because I could not find employment in Fort Wayne. I returned to the city and the same neighborhood and was dismayed to see that nothing has changed over the last 12 years.

I intend to take this 5th District City Council seat and do all that I can to apply my business and economic background towards building a strong and sustainable economy. I want to see our large employers stay and expand. I want to see companies relocating to Fort Wayne. But I believe that the road to Fort Wayne’s future prosperity will be paved by small, innovative companies that are created here. And that is going to take creating a business friendly environment. I want to take advantage of the burgeoning green economy and see more technology related companies here in the city. Not just more web site development firms but new ideas in science, medicine and the environment.

Although the economy is a great concern, it is not the only challenge that we face. The current administration has brought new ethical challenges to us. It is Christmas time and all the stockings are filled with consulting contracts. The current 5th District Councilman also receives a great deal of money through city contracts. That is a serious conflict of interest. Some on the council have worked to try to curtail this abuse but have fallen short. This failure to contain this problem was brought about by the mayor’s rubber stamp team on the council.

I am not running for Council so that I can go downtown and be someone’s intern, office boy or to hold the rubber stamp; not even for a Republican Mayor.

We are still plagued with the secrecy issues that brought us the mess we have downtown surrounding the stadium. I’m not going to say that I would have voted against the stadium. But I would have taken a stand against the lack of ethics, openness and responsibility in the way the deal was financed and presented to the public. Everyone involved knew that it was wrong, but they did it anyway. The stadium and surrounding development could have been hugely successful for the developers and the city. Instead it brought the city more mediocrity and another black eye.

To cut this short, I’ll just make quick mention of the failed public safety academy, where the city will lose another ½ million dollars next year as consultants to city continue to profit from it. One thing that I will push for is a complete audit of the PSA and a close review of the contracts associated with it.

We need to take responsible measures to avoid these types of failures on the front end. If I had to define my campaign with a single word that word would be responsibility.

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