ZIONSVILLE, Ind (WISH) — Since before trains ran down the middle of Main Street, the business of the town of Zionsville was conducted by a the Town Council.
Zionsville is home to just under 45,000 people. It is also one of two towns in the state of Indiana that has a mayor.
Mayor Tim Haak is running for the office for the first time.
“There was no general election four years ago and eight years ago and 12 years ago and 16 years ago because there were no contested races so this is the first time in a long time there have been a November election just for municipal purposes,” Haak said.
Several years ago, with the growth in Zionsvile, the Town Council hired a town manager. The town outgrew that position, so town leadership found a never-before-used state law that allowed them to consolidate surrounding townships and elect a mayor.
“There were no public elections in November. I was unopposed. The Town Council was unopposed. There were no opposed elections in November of 2015,” Haak said.
Haak will face Emily Styron, a Democrat, in the first mayor’s election in the town’s history.
Styron said, “I thought after living here 19 years, to have our town move away from all decisions being made by committee to having a single point of leadership who is going to be responsible for outcomes.”
The race has been competitive but friendly, the biggest issue in the race is economic development.