A ballot measure that would have consolidated executive power in Allen County into a single office failed by a convincing margin Tuesday night.
Voters overwhelmingly defeated the referendum – which proposed restructuring county government away from the current three commissioner system to a single county executive – with about 70 percent checking the “No” box.
That result leaves the current Allen County government structure unchanged.
The proposal was unusual in part because it did not fall strictly along partisan lines. Advocates and financial backers of all political stripes came out on both the “Yes” and the “No” sides of the issue.
Andrew Downs from the Mike Downs Center for Indiana Politics at IPFW says it’s possible those unusual partnerships could build political bridges leading up to next year’s municipal elections.
“People who may have suddenly met others who are like-minded on other issues, and if you take the party label away, they realize they’re like-minded on a lot of issues,” Downs said. “When it comes down to it, a lot of local issues are not partisan, necessarily, and they may find some new friends and some new ways to work together.”
Downs says the resounding failure of the measure may also make the Indiana General Assembly think twice before allowing Allen County – or any other – to attempt a similar restructuring in the future.