Stellar Communities

Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA News

Crawfordsville Mayor Todd Barton has seen previous attempts at regional cooperation fail to serve his community well – especially when Tippecanoe County officials were in the lead.

So forgive him for not being effusive with praise when the Lilly Endowment gave nearly $40 million to the so-called Wabash Heartland Innovation Network, or WHIN, a group of 10 West Central Indiana counties.

Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA News

It’s been more than two years since Crawfordsville was named one of the winners of Indiana’s Stellar Communities grant program.

In that time, there’s been a lot of planning, but not a lot of construction.

Mayor Todd Barton says 2018 will see much of that building get underway, but there are still a few priorities which appear behind schedule.

Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA News

Crawfordsville Mayor Todd Barton is focusing a lot these days on fostering cooperation.

He’s hosted the first of what he hopes will be a series of meetings with business leaders, he’s brought together multiple parties to complete a long-stalled road project and he’s working with the state on Stellar Communities projects.

Stan Jastrzebski / WBAA News

When Crawfordsville won the state’s Stellar Cities designation a couple years ago, the project was based around a building called Fusion 54, which would bring together many economic development entities in the city and county.

But when that project went out for bid, the price came back at least 50 percent too high. So what will that mean for the rest of the city’s plans?

We put that question to Todd Barton this week on Ask The Mayor.

City of Frankfort

To complete a new vision for Frankfort’s downtown, the city and county will have to find $10-20 million .

But first, say some consultants who recently completed a report on that redesign, the city has a number of cosmetic challenges to overcome.

This week on WBAA’s Ask The Mayor, we talk to Frankfort’s Chris McBarnes about where he hopes to get the money and what needs to be cleaned up first.

Courtesy Crawfordsville Mayor's Office

It appears the money is about to start flowing in to fund the improvements Crawfordsville touted to win one of last year’s Stellar Communities designations.

But there are still some kinks to work out, like: don’t you have to own land before you can build on it?

This week on WBAA’s Ask The Mayor, we get an update on the city’s bank account and its construction progress from Todd Barton.

Courtesy Crawfordsville Mayor's Office

It’s fairly common for city-owned utility companies to ask for rate increases.

Most cases are like Crawfordsville’s – the city asks for the rate hike because it needs money for new construction or rehabilitation of existing property.

But what happens when those projects are completed? Today on Ask The Mayor, we ask Crawfordsville’s Todd Barton if those costs will ever go back down.

Also on today’s show: Like Frankfort, Crawfordsville is struggling with a golf course that regularly loses money.

City of Frankfort

The city of Frankfort has taken its transition to police body cameras slowly. But when it comes to police sharing information on social media, the city jumped right in last month.

On this edition of Ask The Mayor, we chat with Mayor Chris McBarnes about whether there are any of the same privacy concerns on Twitter that there are about video of traffic stops.

Courtesy Crawfordsville Mayor's Office

In many cities, it matters very little who sits on the tourism board.

But when you’re trying to make your town seem hip and you’ve got a one-time influx of Stellar Communities money in your back pocket to spend on that task, it may matter a great deal.

Today on Ask The Mayor, we see if Todd Barton of Crawfordsville has any aces up his sleeve who might help him use that cash to raise the city’s profile.

City of Greencastle / http://cityofgreencastle.com/officials/elected-officials/mayor/

Greencastle Mayor Sue Murray says she feels bittersweet as she wraps up her second and final term as mayor. After three decades of city involvement, Murray says it's time to move on.

"It's been a privilege, it's been mostly a pleasure, it's been challenging," Murray says of her time behind the mayor's desk. "I've grown a lot, I've learned a lot. I think the city is in a good place right now. And I can leave knowing that there was no more for me to be able to have taken out of myself and put into the job."

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