Caucus date set to replace Carmel city councilor


Two-term City Councilor Carol Schleif resigned from her position on the council at the second to last meeting of 2016, and now a date has been set to decide on her replacement.

An 11-member caucus will meet to determine the next city councilor at 10 a.m. Jan. 7 at Market District. The meeting is not open to the public.

Schleif represents the Southwest Clay district. She won her first election with 60 percent of the vote in 2011 and won re-election with 56 percent of the vote in 2015. She will move to California for personal reasons. Her replacement will serve the remaining three years of her term.

Ron Houck, who previously ran for the council and lost, has filed, along with Dan Dutcher, vice president for division III sports at the NCAA.

Raju Chinthala, a speech language pathologist who is a frequent attendee of local GOP events, told Current in Carmel that he will file but he hasn’t filed yet. Keith Griffin, who ran against Schleif in the last election, decided against filing.

Dutcher was a member of the Carmel Clay Parks Board from 2001 to 2009 and the Carmel Clay Plan Commission from 2001 to 2008.

“I’d bring experience,” Dutcher said. “I’ve been on the parks board and ethics panel. I’m interested in giving back to the community.”

Chinthala is president of the Indianapolis Hyderabad Sister City Committee, and he serves on Mayor Jim Brainard’s Advisory Commission on Human Relations. He’s also the chairman for the Bully Prevention Alliance.

Ron Houck, a Carmel resident since 1985 and City Council at-large candidate in 2011 and 2015, has worked for Eli Lilly for 20 years in the IT department. In addition, he’s previously served 10 years on the Carmel Plan Commission and eight years on the Clay Township Regional Waste District.