HAMMOND - Six Republicans seeking the party nomination to represent the city
as a whole primarily agree on one point: It's time for a change in perspective
on the City Council.
Their ideas on the issues, however, differ somewhat. The GOP picked Duane
Dedelow Jr., Elden B. LaHayne and Joseph McCarthy as its favored nominees.
Republican voters can pick three of the following candidates:
* Duane Dedelow Jr., 33, of 216 Southmoor Road, president and part owner of
LeViathan Contractors and Engineers Inc., plans to foster investment downtown
and in the city's Hessville section.
He supports sales tax increment and tax increment financing in and around
the marina and would like to establish a council link with School City leaders
to improve the educational process.
"There's a lot of talk about the family unit breaking down," Dedelow said.
"I would like to see park programs directed toward family activities, which
promote unity and togetherness. I would like to see seniors given the best
services we can provide."
* Kim Dildine, 35, of 6337 Van Buren St., who operates a computer business,
Dildine Industries, said he would emphasize overall city cleanup. He would see
that building codes are enforced and loopholes closed for people who fail to
keep up their properties.
Dildine, who tried in vain to save the Paramount Theater, said "the
Democratic party has vastly succeeded at doing nothing. I tried something and
failed, but at least I tried."
He said he opposes toxic waste transport through the city and would work to
keep the federal building downtown.
* E. Jerry Eurley, 52, of 7733 Delmar Ave., who operates Dick Hoyt Office
Products in downtown Hammond lost by 11 votes in the last city primary for the
party's nomination in the 5th District, said he wants to carve out a "working
budget" and drive home the need to keep money in the city.
"I understand bid work, but a lot of that money could be spent in the city
because Hammond has some capable businesses here," Eurley said.
Eurley said he supports tax increment financing, but only after close
investigation. He said he wants to make State Street a two-way street and would
do what he could to keep taxes down.
"I want to see Hammond run like a business. ... I'd like to see a few
business people back on the council. It's not that policemen, firemen or water
department workers aren't good politicians, but they aren't necessarily good
* Stanley Inkley, 76, of 52 Webb St., a retired contractor and a councilman
about 20 years ago, said he wants to create jobs in Hammond.
"I love this town. I've lived here 55 years. I invested money here, made it
here and lost it here," Inkley said at a recent Hammond-Munster League of Women
Voters debate. "If you don't give this to me, I'll haunt you, and I'm a good
Inkley said he is seeking office because people need work. "You ain't got a
decent damn job to give anybody in Hammond. It's all right for these
white-collar guys to say what to do. We need the (proposed third Chicago-area)
airport. We need jobs."
* Elden B. LaHayne, 44, of 6922 White Oak Ave., vice president and funeral
director of LaHayne Funeral Home, a resident of the city the last 26 years and
member of Hammond's Board of Health, said Hammond needs fresh ideas to
"I hope to encourage new businesses that pay more than minimum wage," he
said. "By doing that, we would create jobs and the need for housing."
LaHayne said he supports the marina and would look at all options before a
decision to raise taxes would be made. He said his edge for the nomination is
his business experience, education and work with several service clubs.
* Joseph McCarthy, 35, of 1005 150th St., a state licensed and certified
operator with the Hammond Sanitary District who lost the last general election
in the city to Councilman Pete Torres, D-2nd, said he would work to rescind an
ordinance that restricts public participation in government.
A past president of Hammond Young Republicans and a member of the Vietnam
Vets, American Legion, Hammond Moose Lodge and Grand Calumet Task Force,
McCarthy said people should not owe allegiance to a party label, but to issues
for which their constituents stand.
He said he would work to make the marina work and he agrees with the tax
abatement concept to entice industry.
"I will be an inclusive councilman. Citizen involvement is important. If you
want good government, you have to read, listen and participate in the
governmental decisions affecting everybody."