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Ask The Mayor: Columbus Mayor Lienhoop On Detractors

Jim Lienhoop

Affordable senior housing, final city budget, riverfront liquor license expansion and general election thoughts.

On this week's installment of Ask The Mayor, Columbus Mayor Jim Lienhoop 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.

This conversation has been edited for clarity and conciseness.

Hren: I have to ask about the petition from 13 residents who say some of the 2017 budget numbers were misleading, but after a statement you made about your predecessor former mayor Brown and her supporters asking them to get over losing the election and move on, I’m guessing this is all tied together?

Lienhoop: I thought the objection was frivolous and were pretty easily dismissed. I thought it was just politics as usual in a small town and we ought to shed a little light on that so it's sort of what I did.

Hren: Do you think your statement will make a difference?

Lienhoop: I don't know. The part of openness and transparency is shedding the light on everything that goes on in government and this is just part of it.

Hren: What’s the latest on the Human Rights lawsuit that was filed against Columbus and a few other Indiana cities? I know the hearing was pushed back, but haven’t heard anything new?

Lienhoop: The hearing is tomorrow (Wednesday) and it will be in Noblesville so I plan to go up their along with our city attorney. Not to sure of what the format of the day will be. We intend to defend ourselves. We think our human rights ordinance is appropriate, not only lawful, but fair. And twenty or so other cities have adopted similar kinds of ordinances so we're not along in this issue so I look forward to seeing how this unfolds.

Hren: Are you getting more detail about the railroad study? I would guess the State Road 46 train crossing tops the list as the area most effected by train traffic, is that so and what are the solutions?

Lienhoop: We completed the traffic study portion. Part of what you're trying to do is develop a grade for the intersections. Depending upon the time of day, obviously the traffic volume, you'll get a rating out there that will be a C, D, E and occasional an F and that's what it's going to take to get INDOT's attention. What we want to show them is, although there may be other communities that have been talking to you for some time about road improvements that they like, we need to jump to the head of the line.

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