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Indiana officials face deadline on anti-nepotism law

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County, city, town and township governments across Indiana are racing to adopt new rules against nepotism ahead of a July 1 deadline.

Gov. Mitch Daniels signed a new law in March that prohibits local officeholders from hiring their relatives or from having public contracts with them without making certain disclosures. The law also prohibits public employees from holding any office that controls money or policies that might benefit them. Under that provision, those employees couldn't run for re-election, though they wouldn't be kicked out of office.

The Anderson City Council will review a proposed anti-nepotism ordinance next week, and Madison County commissioners will vote on a county ordinance June 19.

Alexandria has had a policy in place since 2009, and officials there plan to amend it to conform to the state law at a meeting June 18.

Mayor Jack Woods said the only major difference between Alexandria's ordinance and the state law is that the state law prohibits elected officials from hiring family members.

"When you don't have a nepotism law or policy, it can get out of hand," Woods told The Herald Bulletin. "You can have a city full of family members, and that creates a lot of problems."

During his campaign last year for mayor of Anderson, Kevin Smith criticized the former administration for hiring and promoting too many relatives.

City Attorney Jason Childers began work on a new nepotism policy earlier this year and incorporated language from the new state law when it was passed.

The law means that "individuals are placed in their positions based on their merits, rather than as a favor," Childers said.

Childers said that the statute defines the term "relative" as spouse, parent, stepparent, natural or adopted child, stepchild, brother, half brother, sister, half sister, stepbrother, stepsister, niece, nephew, aunt, uncle, daughter-in-law or son-in-law. The Anderson proposal would also cover grandchildren and first and second cousins.

The Elwood City Council adopted the law Monday, Mayor Ron Arnold said. He said he understands the law's intent, but thinks some of its provisions could be difficult for small communities.

"I would much rather have seen local municipalities have more control," he said. "Our federal government and state government sometimes uses an anvil to kill an ant, and if you don't seriously think through the ramifications, you'll hamper a small community in ways you were never intending to."

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  1. I had read earlier this spring that Noodles & Co was going to open in the Fishers Marketplace (which is SR 37 and 131st St, not 141st St, just FYI). Any word on that? Also, do you happen to know what is being built in Carmel at Pennsylvania and Old Meridian? May just be an office building but I'm not sure.

  2. I'm sorry, but you are flat out wrong. There are few tracks in the world with the history of IMS and probably NO OTHER as widely known and recognized. I don't care what you think about the stat of Indy Car racing, these are pretty hard things to dispute.

  3. Also wondering if there is an update on the Brockway Pub-Danny Boy restaurant/taproom that was planned for the village as well?

  4. Why does the majority get to trample on the rights of the minority? You do realize that banning gay marriage does not rid the world of gay people, right? They are still going to be around and they are still going to continue to exist. The best way to get it all out of the spotlight? LEGALIZE IT! If gay marriage is legal, they will get to stop trying to push for it and you will get to stop seeing it all over the news. Why do Christians get to decide what is moral?? Why do you get to push your religion on others? How would legalizing gay marriage expose their lifestyle to your children? By the way, their lifestyle is going to continue whether gay marriage is legalized or not. It's been legal in Canada for quite a while now and they seem to be doing just fine. What about actual rules handed down by God? What about not working on Sundays? What about obeying your parents? What about adultery? These are in the 10 Commandments, the most important of God's rules. Yet they are all perfectly legal. What about divorce? Only God is allowed to dissolve a marriage so why don't you work hard to get divorce banned? Why do you get to pick and choose the parts of the Bible you care about?

  5. Look at the bright side. With the new Lowe's call center, that means 1000 jobs at $10 bucks an hour. IMS has to be drooling over all that disposable income. If those employees can save all their extra money after bills, in five years they can go to the race LIVE. Can you say attendance boost?

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