Column: Transparency receives a boost
I would like to thank the Statehouse legislators, especially Rep. Jerry Torr and Sen. Jim Merritt, for supporting House Bill 1017, which Gov. Mike Pence signed into law March 23, 2016. This bill added local newspapers, such as Current, to the list of acceptable print-media options in which municipalities can publish public notices. This new rule allows for greater transparency of local government, which is what I told the Senate Committee on Local Government when I spoke in support of this bill. The new law dropped the requirement that the media had to have a “paid subscription” base in order to be on the list of acceptable notice publications. Before HB1017, my office could only select The Noblesville Times as the media outlet for publishing public notices, and it reaches only reaches 1.3 percent of Carmel residents. Current, as you might know, is free and reaches 100 percent of households in the communities it serves. We now have market competition and options for public noticing. In Carmel, and maybe it’s the same in your community, residents routinely have voiced their dismay that public notices are not in Current. When they do not see notices printed in the Current, our residents assume we are not doing our job of adequately notifying them of important city business taking place at public meetings. The City of Carmel clerk treasurer, mayor and the Common Council value the citizens’ input, because the more they know, the better our government can represent them. Thank you, State of Indiana, for putting transparency first!
Christine S. Pauley is the clerk treasurer for the City of Carmel and the executive director of the City of Carmel Local Public Improvement Bond Bank. You may reach her at 571-2430.