Mayor Graham Richard today was the guest speaker at the Downtown Rotary where he presented a preview of his 2006 Report to the People sessions.

Mayor Richard expressed his support for proposed legislation in the Indiana General Assembly that promotes more local control and flexibility for municipalities.

House bills 1399 and 1400 propose the following:

* Reduces the reliance on property taxes

* Establishes alternatives for financing local government

* Creates efficient and effective local government

* Assists the State of Indiana in balancing its budget

“Local governments need to have more flexibility at the local level to make key decisions. We want to continue the momentum for efficient and effective government,” said Mayor Richard. “Fort Wayne and Allen County leaders have worked together to produce the first joint homeland security department. Another successful collaboration is the Fort Wayne-Allen County Economic Development Alliance, which has helped us retain and gain thousands of jobs in the last five years. We want to continue to form high performance partnerships to benefit taxpayers.”

Mayor Richard'€™s first Report to the People for 2006 will be at 8 a.m. Tuesday, January 31 at the Greater Fort Wayne Chamber of Commerce, 826 Ewing St.