Ask The Mayor

Thursdays at 1 p.m. on AM 920 and 105.9 FM, with a repeat at 7 p.m.

Each week, WBAA's news team chats with the mayor of a West Central Indiana community on Ask The Mayor. It's a discussion about the most pressing civic and social issues of the day and a chance to let citizens get to know their elected leaders a little better.

E-mail questions for any of the mayors to ask@wbaa.org.

Ask The Mayor airs live Thursdays at 1 p.m. on WBAA News (AM 920 and 105.9 FM) and is rebroadcast the same evening at 7.

Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA News

If there’s one thing we here at WBAA want you to know about Ask The Mayor, it’s this: when you have a question, ask it!

On this week’s conversation with Lafayette Mayor Tony Roswarski, one of our youngest question-askers ever – just 12 years old – engages the mayor on a public policy question that the cities of Lafayette and West Lafayette have decided differently.

City of West Lafayette

It’s been about eight months since West Lafayette’s State Street reopened to traffic. And some drivers feel like they’ve spent the majority of that time either waiting in gridlock or watching walk signals cater to non-existent pedestrians.

This week on WBAA’s Ask The Mayor, a couple listeners want to know what the city is doing to make traffic move more smoothly, and they have a few suggestions for Mayor John Dennis.

Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA News

The City of Crawfordsville, like many smaller Indiana municipalities, struggles to provide a comprehensive set of medical services. But anticipated investment in an autism treatment center for kids could help to lessen the number of families who have to seek treatment elsewhere.

This week on WBAA’s Ask The Mayor, we chat with Crawfordsville Mayor Todd Barton about how much his push to recruit young professionals is impacted by becoming a one-stop shop for amenities people expect in the 21st Century – and whether such a thing is even possible in a town of 16,000 people.

City of Frankfort

The City of Frankfort recently received half-a-million dollars in donations for a park that Mayor Chris McBarnes hopes will revitalize downtown and bring new, long-term investment to the area.

But some detractors at a recent meeting say it’s as though the mayor is trying to buy a new car at a steep price when he could have fixed up the existing vehicle – the city’s other parks that some see as run-down – for far less money.

Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA News

State lawmakers recently passed a bill allowing municipalities to regulate room rentals on websites like AirBnb.

That came after the City of Lafayette passed an ordinance with very similar language making people who rent their rooms on such sites pay a registration fee.

This week on WBAA’s Ask The Mayor, we’ll find out from Lafayette Mayor Tony Roswarski how many people have already registered and how the city plans to track down those who don’t pay the fee.

City of Frankfort

What may have started as a dispute with a Frankfort City Council member has become a letter-writing campaign for Mayor Chris McBarnes.

Frankfort’s chief executive is trying to both combat what he sees as false rumors about possible debt the city will rack up in his last two years in this term of office and speak openly about the problems the city faces.

Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA News

In his state of the city address this week, Lafayette Mayor Tony Roswarski mentioned that drug arrests were way up, year over year.

Any time there’s such a large change in a number like this, the question becomes: was there more crime, were police focusing more effort on rooting it out, or both?

City of West Lafayette

In college communities, there are often undercurrents. Frequently, it’s antagonism toward a rival school or a subtle desire to be more like another school’s town that's admirable in some way.

But in West Lafayette, it’s becoming increasingly clear there’s another, less savory undercurrent: bigotry.

Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA News

In the 21st Century, it’s a bit of an open question how small-to-midsized Indiana cities will attract industry or grow their population base.

Gone are the days of a railroad or a new university creating a boomtown, so what’s a place like Crawfordsville to do?

The answer is probably not going to be “build a windfarm,” so perhaps instead of trying to grow the permanent populace, the city can try to attract visitors on more weekends.

City of Frankfort

On what seems like an increasingly frequent basis, Frankfort Mayor Chris McBarnes’ name is mentioned for other positions than the one he currently holds.

McBarnes declined to run in the special election for the Fourth Congressional District seat in 2016 when Todd Rokita ran for governor, couldn’t find much support from GOP leaders and then scampered back to his current job.

He wouldn’t enter the race to succeed Rokita as the congressman now seeks Joe Donnelly’s Senate seat.

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