By TOM KENLEY
I truly enjoyed my two terms as Noblesville Township Trustee and one term as a Township Board member. It has been a rewarding experience for me personally and professionally to have had the opportunity to serve all of the citizens of Noblesville Township.
The payoff was to help regular low-income people who qualified for a need for financial assistance or simply provide them with good, practical advice or a referral to another nonprofit or government agency that could help where we couldn’t. . I generally took the time to discuss issues and offer possible solutions to clients who weren’t overly upset with my decision to use taxpayer-funded assistance.
Denying assistance to a family or an individual is undoubtedly the most difficult part of being a trustee. Unfortunately, you can’t always help everyone all the time or you wouldn’t be doing the job you were elected to do.
I always looked for reasons to approve before I looked for a reason to deny. My dedicated staff always went out of their way to help and guide people to solutions to their problems. I think they are a good model of how a trust office should be run: people who need it first and client confidentiality.
To my mind, my best accomplishments were new programs to help people at low cost, the establishment of two safe places to stay for township residents in need, and a two-year tax moratorium on the civil tax shown on the back of your property tax return, while providing greater financial assistance to needy residents. We will always need a fee for fire protection and EMS services.
Many thanks to all the churches, civic non-profits, the Noblesville Schools Education Foundation for helping with the first Noblesville Township Trustee Scholarship and to all the good people who donated pantry items or to the municipality’s donation fund. .
I encourage anyone interested in serving the community to apply for public office by February 3, 2023, the main application deadline. I have noticed that many seats remain uncontested or unfiled as of this writing.
These local offices are all very important. Electing good candidates is important to our democracy and is necessary to keep voter interest high. I’ve always heard from younger people, who I’ll call 50 and under, that too many charges are also too big. This will never change without your active participation. Show your willingness to serve, come up with some good ideas, stay kind to those who may not accept you right away, and you just might win! And if you didn’t win and you learned something from the mistakes you made, you should run for the next election. I know several people who have succeeded on their second or third try.
If you are not a young person and still honestly have the drive and energy to represent your constituents at a high level, you should consider running for office or running for re-election. My opinion is that we need more honest, well-intentioned citizens willing to put their names on the local ballot. It really is the best for all of us.
Tom Kenley was first elected as Noblesville Township Trustee in November 2014. He announced that he would not run again in December 2021. The Noblesville Township Trustee is now Theresa Caldwell, who won election in last november For more information, go to NoblesvilleTownshipTrustee.com.