Race on for Franklin mayor: Alexander a candidate

Two longtime city officials are in the race for Franklin mayor.

Janet Alexander, the former clerk-treasurer, decided this week that she was up for the job of completing the term of former Mayor Joe McGuinness, who has resigned to become the leader of the state department of transportation.

City council member Steve Barnett also is a candidate for mayor, and other residents still could be considered. The deadline to become a candidate is 72 hours before the Franklin Republican Party caucus, set for Jan. 30.

Alexander said she decided to join the race because this is an important time for Franklin, and key projects need to be completed or initiated in the coming years. She cited the ongoing infrastructure work, the development boom on U.S. 31, the mayor’s student advisory council at Franklin Community High School, Interstate 69 and the relationship with Franklin College as the many examples of opportunities, assets and projects that are important to the city.

“What makes me believe that I am the right person is that I am a person who starts things and gets them done,” Alexander said. She was the city’s clerk-treasurer for 16 years before being narrowly defeated in the 2015 primary.

“I’m detail-oriented. I’m a closer, and I always have been.”

Barnett, the city council president and interim mayor, is continuing to reach out to the precinct committee members and the vice precinct committee members.

One of the top issues they have been discussing is infrastructure.

The people who will be choosing the city’s next mayor want to be sure the progress made in recent years with road, sewer and drainage work will continue, Barnett said.

“They want to make sure we don’t lose momentum. They want to be assured I will continue doing that,” he said.

Barnett goes through the list of $40 million in projects planned through 2021 and his involvement in them on the city council and city board of works. He also discusses his goal to see changes along U.S. 31 to help with traffic flow and make the area more pedestrian friendly, he said.

“Right at this time in our history, the next several years, I just think that I am the guy that can put the puzzle together,” Barnett said.

Alexander, too, is contacting all precinct committee members and attempting to meet with them, and she hopes residents who support her will contact the 22 people who will be making the decision and encourage them to vote for her in the caucus.

As mayor, she would make sure Franklin remembers the various stakeholders and groups who are attracted to the community because of the education, business development and balanced growth in all sectors, such as housing, industry and education.

“What was creeping along in 2000 is leaping forward,” Alexander said. “It’s an exciting time, and I want to be part of it.”

If you go

Republican caucus to select next Franklin mayor

When: 7 p.m. Jan. 30

Where: Franklin City Hall, 70 E. Monroe St.

Candidates: Janet Alexander, Steve Barnett

Deadline to apply for mayor: 72 hours before the caucus, or 7 p.m. Jan. 27. Apply by sending a letter to Johnson County Republican Party Chairperson Beth Boyce, 845 Richart Lane, Greenwood, IN, 46142.

Author photo
Michele Holtkamp is editor of the Daily Journal. She can be reached at mholtkamp@dailyjournal.net or 317-736-2774.