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'Strong, safe, financially stable': Dave Wood gives Mishawaka State of the City address

Mishawaka Mayor Dave Wood, right, delivers the State of the City address at Mishawaka City Hall on April 11, 2024.
Photo provided, city of Mishawaka
Mishawaka Mayor Dave Wood, right, delivers the State of the City address at Mishawaka City Hall on April 11, 2024.

Touting its financial stability, mayor Dave Wood delivered Mishawaka’s State of the City on Thursday.

Wood is in his 14th year as Mishawaka’s mayor and his message to the community on Thursday likely sounded familiar.

“What is the state of our city? Overall it hasn’t changed in decades and it’s the same this year: Strong, safe, financially stable and growing,” Wood said.

During his hour-long speech, the mayor touched on recent investments to the city’s water treatment systems and fire stations as well as the police department’s change to 12-hour shifts.

Wood said crime rates in Mishawaka have decreased in 12 of the 14 years he’s been mayor, though the police department has faced a chronic staffing shortage in the past few years compared to historic levels. That led to city officials — with the push and support from the police union — to restructure the department's manpower. Now, officers work 12-hour shifts and more hours, but significantly fewer days throughout the year.

The mayor also touted the second phase of the Mill apartment complex near the river and the soon to open Avalon apartments across the street as examples of high-end housing the city should focus on.

“One might think that a community chalk full of inexpensive housing is a great thing,” Wood said. “However cities with lots of inexpensive housing tend to be the places that are not growing and certainly not thriving.”

The city pitched in $13.5 million to the second phase of the Mill's expansion.

Wood also praised the completion of a new $40 million water treatment near Juday Creek, saying it begins a "new era of water security here in Mishawaka."

Marek Mazurek has been with WVPE since April 2023, though he's been in Michiana for most of his life. He has a particular interest in public safety reporting. When he's not on the radio, Marek enjoys getting way too into Notre Dame football and reading about medieval English history.