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City administration reminds citizens of the promise of transparency

MUNCIE, Ind. (NewsLink) -- Following former Mayor Dennis Tyler’s sentencing, the City of Muncie and its current mayoral administration wanted to remind citizens that transparency is a promise. 

"I think the public was definitely wanting a change and we worked hard to try and follow through with those changes,” said Mayor Dan Ridenour. 

From the beginning of his campaign, Ridenour knew the importance of having an "honest and open government.” As mayor-elect, Ridenour proposed Ordinance 3-20 in addition to the state law for department purchases over $150,000.

"I wanted to put something that would restrict and slow down the process for less than $150,000, and so I did that,” Ridenour said. “I filed that while I was on the council and it was read the first month I was Mayor and got approved 9-0." 

Ridenour said he has also fulfilled his promises to hold monthly public forums, make agendas easily available to citizens, fill new positions on the administration and add "additional training" to ensure clarity for Muncie residents.

"We've tried to do those things to help us as a city organization to be transparent but to also put in some steps and procedures that don't allow things to get out of control,” Ridenour said.

For those who have seen the transition of power, like Associate Professor of Political Science at Ball State University Chad Kinsella, the priority of transparency has been noted. 

"The City of Muncie has really tried to make all areas of city government more available online,” Kinsella said. 

Kinsella said he used to struggle to find public information on city sites, but under the new administration, that has not been the case. Kinsella wants Muncie citizens to use this knowledge to their advantage. 

"I would strongly encourage people to look that up and utilize this new availability of information if they have questions or concerns about the city,” Kinsella said. 

Contact Grace Bentkowski with questions or comments at gmbentkowski@bsu.edu.