October 31, 2017 | 10:35 EDT
Jared Evans is a Indianapolis City-County Councilor for District 22. As a local elected official, he fights for community investment and vibrant economic development and is committed to the fight for high-paying quality jobs.
How long have you been in office?
I took office on January 1st 2016, after winning election in November of 2015.
What motivated you to serve?
I was done watching the community that I grew up in become economically depressed, our infrastructure falling apart and our neighborhoods becoming more and more unsafe. I had witnessed long enough a tale of 2 cities, one, that received attention and investment, in the economy, infrastructure and public safety, while the other was left to decay. I witnessed our City leaders get elected time and time again only to continue the same old path of addressing symptoms rather than curing the disease. I was fed up. I knew it was time to act. I had to try to change the course of the dialogue to one of action.
Tell us about Indianapolis and your District.
Indianapolis is home to almost a million people, making it the 15th largest city in the United States. A city that was once known for manufacturing is now becoming a Midwest hub for tech companies. Recently Salesforce named Indy its largest hub outside of its World Headquarters in San Francisco. Come May, you’ll hear the roar of the World famous Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the racing capital of the world, where over 200,000 people sit in attendance.
If you enjoy the outdoors, you’ll enjoy our world-class urban bike and pedestrian path that connects neighborhoods, CulturalDistricts and entertainment amenities. On the Southwest side of the City, you’ll find City-County Council District 22, home to the Indianapolis International Airport, voted 5 times, North America’s best airport. In the heart of my district, you’ll find the old national road, the first US major highway, from Cumberland, Maryland to Vandalia, Illinois. Washington Street as it is called today, is the main East – West artery.
Our district made national news during the 2016 presidential race over the announced closing of the Carrier plant, and with it over a thousand jobs. Sadly, those manufacturing jobs weren’t the first to go in our district, nor have they been the last. Months later, the Rexnord plant announced its closing and moving of jobs to Mexico. District 22 is a blue collar district fighting for its future and rebirth.
What is your fight back for your district and where are Indianapolis’s areas of resistance that combat regressive federal policies and executive orders?
While I battle issues for my district, such as infrastructure development, good vibrant economic redevelopment and job creation, I must also take on the larger fights for the sake of our city and residents. We fight for higher and equal wages, as 1 in 5 people in our city live in poverty. I partner with our local progressive unions, such as Unite Here and SEIU to fight for our progressive values.
2017 policy goals?
The big picture, to build a more robust communications infrastructure and grassroots organizing for the purpose of motivating and educating citizens about local and national policies. I believe by empowering and educating citizens, we strengthen our movement and progressive values. On the district level, I look to push through several ordinances pertaining to local economic development and more environmentally friendly policies for our City.