Kokomo Mayor Greg Goodnight has assembled his list of priorities for 2011, as he runs for a second term in office.
Much as national media have done in recent weeks, Goodnight is touting the fact his city has eased away from the cliff of economic oblivion it appeared to be facing 18 months ago. These days, unemployment is no longer approaching 20 percent, Chrysler is once again paying property taxes and the mayor has time to focus on city beautification which he hopes will keep people from leaving town.
“I’m going to talk about education and how important it is to our community. And also make sure that we talk about what we need to do so that when people do work here, we’re able to retain them by working on the quality of life issues,” Goodnight said.
Howard County Republican Party Chairman Craig Dunn said he understands the mayor will tout the city’s turnaround, but adds it might have happened anyway…
“The mayor really didn’t play a role in that turnaround,” Dunn said. “That was done on a national level with the Obama Administration bailing out the auto companies. We are the beneficiary of that. And I don’t want to downplay that. I’m very, very happy we’ve got a thriving Chrysler corporation here in Kokomo.”
Dunn said he hasn’t found a viable candidate to face Goodnight in the general election, but cautions that the filing period hasn’t opened yet and an enthusiastic newcomer could surface. If that doesn’t happen, Dunn said , he foresees pouring resources into ensuring Republican control of the Kokomo Common Council.