Over the past three years, Markus has been a leader on a number of issues that are important to residents of District 17 and the city at large. Click below to learn more about what Markus has accomplished and what he plans to do going forward.

Public Safety

Markus recognizes government’s number one responsibility is public safety and as such has consistently been a leader on the issue. He has ensured full funding for LMPD and has been a leading voice rejecting calls to defund the police. Markus was the primary sponsor of the new FOP contracts that will pay our officers fairly and help attract the best and brightest. Additionally, Markus has championed additional investments in public safety initiatives including a co-responder model for non-emergency calls, funding for Cure Violence initiatives, and additional anti-violence measures.

Markus has also voiced to ensure proper funding for other public safety agencies including both Louisville and Suburban Fire and EMS services.

Markus is working to fund additional attraction and retention efforts to ensure we quickly get additional police officers onto the street. He is championing a proposal to incentivize officers to move to Louisville with significant recruitment bonuses and working with the Administration to get recently retired officers under contract to augment staffing. Similar efforts are also being developed to recruit Metro Corrections staff and EMTs.

Panhandling and Homelessness

Markus oversaw the development, pilot and expansion of Goodwill’s Another Way program which will provide day work to those who are panhandling. In cities where this program has been successfully implemented there have been significant reductions in the number of panhandlers and similar results are expected in Louisville as this program ramps up in 2022.

Markus has also been a leader in the development and funding of Louisville’s comprehensive plan to reduce the street homeless population. Launched in late 2021, this plan features four components to sheltering the unhoused: (1) safe camping space for those not wishing to come indoors, (2) temporary shelters, (3) permanent supportive housing, and (4) permanent housing.

Over the next four years, Markus will ensure successful oversight of the execution of this plan. Markus will also closely monitor the implementation of the ‘Another Way’ program and, after it proves successful, work to expand its reach to ensure we are able to address panhandling across the city.

Education

Markus believes that a strong public school system is crucial to a strong and vibrant Louisville and as such has been a champion for stronger accountability and partnership with JCPS.

Markus led the effort to try to keep kids in school during the Covid-19 pandemic, urging JCPS to explore all available options that would keep kids safe and in school (like utilizing the convention center, YUM! Center, etc). Markus has also been a proponent of stronger partnership with the city on anti-violence initiatives.

Markus has been a leader in the funding of Evolve502, a scholarship program for all JCPS graduates that allows them to obtain a tuition-free 2-year degree or job certification.

Over the next four years, Markus will advocate for even stronger partnership with JCPS. We have school assets in most neighborhoods in our city and those assets should be utilized to deliver services. Schools could be utilized to run community centers, adult education centers, neighborhood places and more after hours and on weekends.

To help address issues of student safety, Metro Louisville and LMPD should be working with JCPS on an early warning system within schools. Markus understands that what happens inside of schools is directly linked to what happens in our neighborhoods (and vice versa) and partnership between Metro government and JCPS is critical.

Pandemic Response

Markus has been a thought leader on the city’s pandemic response. In the first few days of the pandemic, Markus led the effort to establish the $2.7 Mm Covid Relief Fund to ensure people who had lost their jobs had emergency access to food and housing assistance. This effort was prior to any state or federal intervention and provided critical assurance during crisis.

Markus has also been a leading voice in the establishment of clear benchmarks and open and honest communication so that residents can know what to expect and at what levels additional intervention would be needed/removed.

Westport Road/Traffic

Markus has ensured that over $1 million dollars was budgeted for Westport Road improvements to reduce congestion and increase safety. This work is currently underway and includes the addition of right turn lanes, improved safety markings, and traffic lights. This work will also benefit from the Gene Snyder/I-71 improvements as we will continue to see reductions in the amount of traffic on Westport Road.

When Markus was elected 3 years ago, this was the number one complaint for the district and has been significantly mitigated. Markus will continue to focus on securing funding additional traffic control improvements.

Workforce Development

One of Markus’s primary focus areas is on workforce development/future proofing our workforce. Markus has been a champion for skill development programs including scholarship funding and barrier reduction programs to get the unemployed into the workforce.

Markus has worked closely with Greater Louisville Inc on programs that help improve our workforce, helping ensure we can continue to attract employers to the city. Markus helped design the Career Accelerator Network, a program where people in low skilled jobs are partnered with higher skilled employers who help mentor and guide those individuals so that they can move up the income ladder.

During Markus’s time on Council, Louisville has also seen significant growth in employment and economic development efforts. Investments by our leading employers such as Ford, UPS, and GE Alliances are at all time highs which has led to record low unemployment and rising wages. Continued focus on creating an employer-friendly environment is critical to building on these gains.

Railroad Blockage

Markus partnered extensively with CSX to ensure trains no longer block the intersections around the Kentucky Truck Plant at Chamberlain Lane and Lucas Lane. While the trains will always need to block some portion of the road as they enter/exit the Ford Motor Company plant, extended, unattended blockages of those intersections have largely been eliminated.

Development

Markus has worked to balance the needs of homeowners against the desires of developers. While in office, no additional apartment complexes have been approved in District 17. Additionally, work to strengthen the tree preservation ordinance and other common sense, capacity-based development standards will protect the rights of existing residents.

Markus is also working with Metro Design Services to develop new capacity models that more appropriately consider the impacts of new developments on existing infrastructure. These proposals will include both drainage and traffic capacity considerations to ensure proper infrastructure is in place prior to the overdevelopment of an area.

Paving

As a leader on the Budget Committee, Markus has overseen the continued funding of Louisville’s annual paving budget at $20 Mm annually. This level is critical to maintaining and improving current infrastructure and the results of this work can be seen across the district.

Parks and Libraries

Markus has been a champion for the continued investment in our parks and libraries.

During the budget cuts of 2019, Markus’s quick and creative thinking ensured the Middletown Library remained open an additional 6 months longer than planned. After its closing, Markus immediately began working on an alternative site and worked to get full funding for the re-opening of the new Middletown Library branch.

Markus has also ensured proper investments in the parks across the city and specifically Hounz Lane Park, where discretionary dollars have been used to invest in the park and build additional amenities. In early 2022, Markus will be initiating a master planning process for both Hounz Lane and Berrytown Park to develop a roadmap for the next phase of improvements.

Communication

From day one, Markus has put special emphasis on communication with constituents. Markus publishes a weekly newsletter and attends HOA and community meetings regularly.