Pete’s New Ideas

Each day I learn more about Hoosiers' concern for their futures and the direction they want to see the state's finances take, and I grow increasingly certain that we can do more with the office. I've met hard-working citizens from all walks of life, and their aspirations are both universal and straightforward. They want to work at a job that pays a decent wage, to educate their kids, to keep their homes, and retire in financial security.

It's an amazingly reasonable take on the American dream, yet for many families it's slipping out of reach. People aren't asking for much, but they need a government that will help make it easier, not harder, to get there.

I am running for State Treasurer because its responsibilities touch every part of our lives, from education to retirement, and doing more with this office is the best thing I could do to help put the American dream back within reach for Hoosier families.

As Indiana's next State Treasurer I can use the "power of the purse" to help bring much needed reform to the banking, credit card and lending industries. We need greater protections and more transparency in place to protect our families from dishonest banking practices, misleading claims and excessive fees. I can work with banks and other lenders to address the mortgage foreclosure crisis so more hardworking Hoosiers can stay in their homes. And I can work to ensure that our state's resources are invested in ways that stimulate the flow of capital right here in Indiana, growing businesses and creating jobs.

Pete's Plan:

1. Find new ways to stimulate job growth and economic development using state funds. We need to make sure our state money is working for us by reinvesting state funds in assets issued by Indiana-based companies wherever this is consistent with a good return on investment.

2. Ensure banks treat customers fairly. The Treasurer does not regulate banks, but the office does a great deal of business with banks on behalf of the people of Indiana. I will use the state's relationship with public depositories to raise the standards of banks' treatment of consumers.

3. Put jobs over politics. Recently, many have pointed to a worrying pattern of politicization in the Treasurer's office. The Treasurer needs to concentrate on economic opportunity for the state of Indiana, and I will never let this mission take a back seat to partisan politics while in office.

4. Order a comprehensive risk review. Right now, state funds include hundreds of millions of dollars in junk bonds, and the state's investment policy enables other risky investments. I will order a comprehensive review to determine how we can reduce Indiana’s exposure to risky debt and reduce or eliminate junk bond holdings.

5. Improve transparency in the office. Presently it is difficult for citizens to access the investment policy statements that govern how our money is managed in funds like the Major Moves Construction Fund. I will release all investment policy statements online, and work with the Auditor’s office to increase transparency around trades and positions in state funds.

6. Review the current investment management structure. Currently, much of our state fund management is outsourced to out-of-state firms. I’ll lead a comprehensive review of current management deals and look for opportunities to bring this management back in-house whenever it makes sense financially.

7. Advocate stringent ethical standards for the office. Indiana cannot afford the slightest appearance of conflicts of interest and "pay to play" politics in this office. I will work with the legislature to implement common-sense ethics standards so that no citizen will have to wonder if investment decisions were affected by corporate campaign contributions.

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