Allen County Commissioner Nelson Peters was sworn in for his fifth four-year term during the Board of Commissioners’ Jan. 8 legislative session. Peters was reelected Nov. 3 to represent District 1, which includes most of the eastern half of the county.
Peters has previously served on Allen County Council and has had various business interests within the community.
Peters was sworn in by Allen Superior Court Judge Craig Bobay, who noted the significance of upholding such a tradition just two days after protesters stormed the U.S. Capitol in an effort to overturn the confirmation of President-elect Joe Biden.
“I took my oath of office after my November election about three weeks ago, but the events that have transpired in our nation in the last few days cause us to pause and reflect on what you are about to say and do,” Bobay told Peters. “People have different views of our vice president, but our fellow Hoosier Mike Pence, under great pressure to do otherwise, fulfilled his oath by faithfully supporting the Constitution and the rule of law in counting and reporting the results of the Electoral College. It is with this background, Nelson, that I am honored to administer the oath of office to you.”
Peters has been involved in several recent projects throughout the county, including expansions to Lutheran Hospital, Sweetwater, Sabert, Northrop High School and the construction of a 650,000-square-foot facility for Amazon, which is expected to add more than 1,000 jobs to the local economy.
Peters has also been credited as the architect of the Emergency Management/Homeland Security mergers as well as the 911/Communication department, the integration of the Department of Planning Services and the consolidation of the City of Fort Wayne and Allen County Geographic Information Systems and Information Technology Boards.
He also led efforts to establish an employee health clinic and the first county strategic plan in the state, which resulted in Allen County receiving County Achievement Awards from the Association of Indiana Counties. The health clinic as well as other updates to the county’s employee health insurance program have allowed the county to successfully lower health insurance costs seven out of the last eight years, saving the county millions of dollars.
“2020 has been an extremely challenging time for Allen County and its citizens,” Peters said. “We have withstood the storms, however, and are well-positioned to move this community to the next level. We must maintain this momentum to make sure that companies will want to continue to expand and locate here.
“My priorities over the next four years include continuing to help lead economic development efforts and working closer with our neighborhoods to ensure that there is modern infrastructure including the hard surfacing of all roads, making sewer rates more affordable and helping to mitigate broadband deficiencies in some of our more rural areas. Through these increased efforts, we will realize a continuing improvement in the quality of life of all of our Allen County citizens.”
Also during Jan. 8’s legislative session, the commissioners elected new officers for 2021. Richard Beck was elected as the board’s new president. Beck is serving his first term as District 3 commissioner. He served as the board’s vice president in 2020.
Peters was elected vice president for 2021, and Therese Brown, District 2, last year’s board president, was elected to serve as secretary.