Council tables Electric Works vote after 5 businessmen get involved

Local News

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) — Fort Wayne City Council unanimously voted to table the resolution to investigate the unplugging of Electric works.

According to Councilman At-Large Glynn Hines, the vote on the resolution is expected to be in three weeks to give all parties involved enough time to continue discussions with the Mayor for alternative plans.

He added that hopefully a deal is struck during this time frame.

“Our motive has always been to save those 500 jobs, to save those thousand plus construction jobs,” Hines said. “That has been the only motive that we had.”

Councilman Hines added that the reason that the vote tabled for a later date is because progress is being made behind closed doors between five businessmen and Mayor Tom Henry.

“As a matter of fact, one of the five men that met with the Mayor today has stepped up and now he is investing as an investor and looking at discussion with other developers for continuing projects, this is a very positive project.”

WANE 15 reached out to Tom Kelley, one of the businessmen involved with the project, and he told us that he suggested the council to stand down with the vote because progress is being made. Hines said the five businessmen stepped in and started private conversations with the Mayor the week the contract was terminated.

Those businessmen include:

  • Chuck Surack of Sweetwater
  • Tim Ash of Ash Brokerage
  • Mark Music of Ruoff Mortgage
  • Mark Millet from Steel Dynamics
  • and Tom Kelley of Kelley Automotive Group

Council president and cosponsor of the bill Tom Didier said the resolution was to apply pressure to get all parties on one page. He wants the deal to go through because he does not believe an economic development like this will happen again in Fort Wayne.

“We felt like we had no other choice because we knew it was a great project. We knew the federal government put dollars into it. We knew the state put dollars into it. We knew the city had already put money in, the county had already put money in,” said Didier. “The big picture with this whole thing is not losing Do it Best.”

If the council continues with the vote, it is scheduled for October 13.

Tuesday night, both the mayor’s office and RTM Ventures told WANE 15 that they are talking to local developers to partner on the project. It’s still unclear if they are talking to the same developers.

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