Gorbett seeking second term

Mark Gorbett, who has worked in county government for 40 years, has filed to seek a second term on the Bartholomew County Council as a Republican.

Gorbett had 28 years of law enforcement experience as a deputy before succeeding Republican Kenny Whipker as Bartholomew County sheriff in 2006. With 66 percent of the vote, Gorbett became the county’s top lawman by defeating Democrat Richard Funch in the general election.

In both the 2010 primary and general elections, he faced no opposition as he won his second term as sheriff. Retiring from law enforcement four years later, Gorbett was the only choice on the 2014 ballot to succeed Ryan Lauer on the county council.

Gorbett, 60, said his first term on the council has not been easy.

“I witnessed first-hand not having adequate funds to effectively manage the Sheriff’s Department and watched other county leaders struggle as well,” he said.

Gorbett said he spent much of his first term pushing to raise revenue. It was necessary to not only balance the county’s budget, but to also proactively address the cost of future needs, he said.

“I feel we are now on a solid financial ground,” said Gorbett of the council’ 4-3 vote to increase the local income tax last fall. “I pledge to spend wisely all additional funds collected.”

If elected to a second term on the council, Gorbett said his priorities will include expanding inmate capacity at the county jail, supporting a local drug court, and focus on a long-term plan to repair or replace deteriorating county buildings.

Mark Gorbett

Age: 60

Residence: Columbus

Education: 1975 graduate of Columbus North High School. Attended Ball State University, 1975 -1979. Graduate of the Indiana Law Enforcement Academy, 1980.  Graduate of the FBI National Academy, 2002.

Offices held: President of the Bartholomew County Council. Has represented District 3 on the council since 2015.  Served two terms as Bartholomew County sheriff, 2007-2014.

Community involvement:  Works with the Alliance for Substance Abuse in Bartholomew County, the Bartholomew County Community Correction Advisory Board, the Emergency Operations Center Board, Evidence Based Decision Making of Bartholomew County, and the Bartholomew County Data Board.  Serves leadership roles with Westside Community Church.

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Mark Webber is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at mwebber@therepublic.com or 812-379-5636.