Republican and Democrat voters in the Town of Chesterton will both have a
choice in Tuesday’s municipal primary election.
But only Republicans will have a true choice.
That’s because one of the two Democrats on the ballot for nomination to the
3rd District seat on the Town Council has withdrawn his candidacy.
On the Democrat
Voters who pull a Democrat ballot will see only one contested race: that
between Brian Mulholland and Calvin Chubb for the 3rd District seat
currently held by Republican Nick Walding. But Chubb told the Chesterton
Tribune in an e-mail on April 7 that unanticipated commitments made his
candidacy untenable. “I’m fully endorsing my opponent in this election and
wish him luck in the fall election,” Chubb wrote in the e-mail.
Mulholland, 26, is a dispatcher for Reliable Transportation, a volunteer
firefighter with the Porter Fire Department, and a precinct committeeman for
Westchester 12 who’s interested in making Chesterton more congenial for
small business—he’s no fan of big boxes—and who would like to see the town
capture more tourist dollars.
“I’m relatively new to politics,” Mulholland told the Tribune. “I
haven’t really tested my feet yet. But I’m a quick learner. I like to think
I make good decisions. I put everybody else’s best interests at heart. . . .
I’m relatively young. I can bring a fresh pair of eyes to any problems or
situations we have here.”
Voters who pull a Republican ballot will likewise see only one contested
race: that between incumbent Emerson DeLaney and challenger Tristan Ziska.
DeLaney, 56, is the store manager at Hopkins Ace Hardware. He’s seeking his
second term on the council, previously served a term on the Board of Zoning
Appeals, and points to the current council’s achievements: the friendly
annexation of around 140 acres on both sides of Ind. 49 south of the Indiana
Toll Road; the creation of a new tax increment financing district to fund
the installation of utilities along the Ind. 49 corridor; the appointment of
a Town Manager and new Fire Chief, Police Chief, and Building Commissioner.
“The current council has done a lot of good things for our community,”
DeLaney told the Tribune. “We meld well together. And with the moneys
we are entrusted with, we have been able to accomplish a lot, with parks,
infrastructure, the future of our community. I want to see that through.”
Ziska, 25, is an IT systems coordinator for QSRSoft in Chesterton. Ziska is
basing his candidacy on his newcomer status. “What I’m bringing to the table
is a fresh view, something new,” he told the Tribune. “The framers of
the Constitution thought it was important enough that we get a fresh face in
every four years. Why not the same thing here? Same idea, let’s try
Ziska—who moved to Chesterton from Chicago in December 2010—would like to
focus on economic development with an emphasis on small business in the
Downtown. He also expressed his dissatisfaction with the frequency of road
and utility work in Chesterton.
The other four incumbent members of the Town Council are running unopposed
for their party’s nomination: Republican Jim Ton for the 1st District seat;
Republican Jeff Trout for the 2nd District seat; Republican Nick Walding for
the 3rd District seat; and Democrat Sharon Darnell for the 4th District
Clerk-Treasurer and Republican Gayle Polakowski is also running unopposed.