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Ask The Mayor: Kokomo's Goodnight On Ice Rink, Housing Projects

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City workers are installing an ice rink in Kokomo's Municipal Stadium. (City of Kokomo photo)

The city's new ice rink is scheduled to be open to the public in a few days, more affordable housing projects are moving forward, and it's too early for the mayor to announce his intentions for next year's mayoral race.

On this week’s installment of Ask The Mayor, Kokomo Mayor Greg Goodnight addresses these issues and more. Listen to the full conversation with Indiana Newsdesk anchor Joe Hren by clicking on the play button above, or read some of the questions and answers below. A portion of this segment airs 6:45 and 8:45 a.m. Wednesday on WFIU.

WFIU's Lindsey Wright fills in for Joe Hren this week. This conversation has been edited for clarity and conciseness.

Wright: Let's start with what's going on at Municipal Stadium, an ice rink is being built?

Goodnight: It's being assembled as we speak. We'll begin on December 5th and run through the second week of January. It will be 60 feet by 90 feet and the whole idea is to add something for people to enjoy during the holidays and winter season, make use of the stadium and we partnered with not-for-profit Bridges Outreach, they do after school and mentoring projects, and this is a chance to provide a fundraiser for them. 

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Goodnight says $10 will get you in and a pair of ice skates, but look for discounts online and around town. (Lindsey Wright, WFIU/WTIU News)

Wright: The stadium opened in 2015, has it generated the revenue and activity you had hoped for?

Goodnight: The main thing is to generate the activity. So yes, when we started the design, it was to replace or replicate our stadium that we used on the south side that we used for high school baseball. We put together a committe and instead of retrofitting the old stadium, we might as well build a new one so we built one downtown. 

Since that time, Indiana University Kokomo has added baseball as part of their sports program. Next fall Indiana University Kokomo will add a women's soccer and they'll play collegiate soccer at the stadium and we added collegiate wooden bat baseball over the summer, the Kokomo Jackrabbits.

Wright: On this show we've talked about housing projects seeking funding through the state. We learned a couple of those received $3 million to move forward. Could you fill us in on those projects and why you think the state approved the funding?

Goodnight: We deal a lot with state agencies, and the Indiana housing, IHCDA, they've been one of the best agencies to work with and we feel like we're on the same page. There needs to be quality housing available for all Hoosiers regardless of your social economic status.   

One was for low to mod housing for families and the other for homeless families. There's going to be the opportunity for addiction help at that facility and part of it is to give stability to parents. Statistics show stable home life leads to a better chance of recovery. 

Wright: There's a report that says it will be the first of its kind in central Indiana, what makes it different?

Goodnight: That the support will be in the facility itself. There will be small groups of families that live there, about 30, and they'll have access to counseling, treatment services in house. It gives them a small network of people going through similar situations.

Wright: May primaries will be here before you know it, any thoughts on running in 2019 for what would be your fourth term as mayor?

Goodnight: That's a fair question, we'll have an announcement in the near future. Very fortunate a few years ago, I was elected a third term, the only democrat in the history of the city to be elected to a third term and not to shut you down, we'll announce something here in the near future.

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Goodnight says the new downtown bus station is scheduled to open next week. (Lindsey Wright, WFIU/WTIU News)

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