Issues and Priorities
Roads and Infrastructure
Well-maintained roads and bridges are crucial to our economic development and our safety. For too long, Indianapolis has suffered from underinvestment in our vital infrastructure.
Indiana currently uses a "centerline miles" measure to determine road funding. This fails to take into account width or traffic of a particular road, leading to underfunding of Marion County infrastructure. Changing this measure is crucial to ensuring that Indianapolis can repair and maintain our roads.
We must also leverage new road construction technology, offering Indiana as a test bed for cutting edge transportation materials and methods.
We are living in an epidemic of crime. Indianapolis has broken murder records for five out of the last six years. A recent analysis by Fox59 found that 43% of suspects arrested for killing people in 2021 were out of jail on pre-trial release or out on parole when they committed those crimes.
Indiana state law currently requires courts to offer bail and other conditional release to both accused individuals and convicted criminals. Eliminating this requirement would allow courts to keep dangerous offenders off the streets.
We must continue to fund Indiana police departments to ensure that they are properly staffed and equipped to protect Hoosier citizens, and to recruit and train new officers, while also maintaining accountability and oversight of law enforcement. We must also introduce measures to ensure transparency and accountability for prosecutors, including the publishing of filing rates alongside conviction rates.
Also, state law requires Marion County to house State inmates, but only pays a fee of $35 a day, despite the cost of housing those inmates running $47-82 a day. We must fully fund counties that house state inmates.
Fuel prices are at historic highs, and the costs of heating and electricity aren't far behind. Indiana already has some of the highest gas taxes in the country and, with recent developments in Ukraine and the Federal Reserve, energy prices are poised to go much higher.
Also, in the post-COVID world, fewer white collar workers are commuting while workers in retail, service, manufacturing, agricultural trades must still commute. This lays the burden of gas taxes unfairly on the working class.
Cutting gas taxes, expanding price gouging regulations, engaging alternate fuels, and protecting energy assistance programs will help Hoosier families weather the cold seasons and pay their bills. Also, expanding securitization options (such as SB 386 2021) will allow energy companies to refinance debt, invest in new energy, and lower bills for customers.