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Lone Democrat enters race for state treasurer

– A former Illinois state lawmaker is seeking the Democratic nomination for Indiana treasurer.

Mike Boland, 71, of Fishers filed paperwork Friday morning to run. Delegates will make the choice official at the Indiana Democratic Party’s State Convention on May 31.

He is the only one running on the Democratic side. Three people are seeking the Republican nomination for state treasurer to be decided June 7.

“I bring a lifetime of public service to this campaign and hopefully to this office,” Boland said.

He wants to add balance to state government, which is controlled by Republicans, saying “it’s too lopsided in power. There is too little accountability and transparency.”

Boland, a 30-year retired educator, moved to Indiana in 2012 with his wife, Mary, after serving in the Illinois legislature for 16 years. Since arriving in Indiana to be closer to family, Boland has become active in the Democratic Party, helping candidates and organizations with their mission to restore balance to Hoosier government.

“Mike Boland is a lifelong public servant who will work hard to advance the cause of ‘better and more balanced’ government in our Statehouse,” State Democratic Chair John Zody said. “Hoosiers deserve better in our state, and a candidate like Mike who understands that mission. When elected, he will keep his focus on Hoosiers instead of on politics.”

Boland left the Illinois legislature in 2010 and ran an unsuccessful campaign for lieutenant governor. He then ran briefly for Congress in Illinois in 2011 before dropping out of that race and seeking a state Senate seat instead. He lost the primary for the Senate race in early 2012.

Boland said he hadn’t planned to run again but “it’s just part of my nature to try to make things a bit better.”

The Indiana treasurer invests state dollars. The office also runs the college savings plan and the Indiana Bond Bank; the treasurer also sits on the State Board of Finance.

“It is imperative that there be transparent and balanced representation in our Statehouse,” he said. “As treasurer, I will work to restore the trust of Hoosiers with my attention squarely focused on the fiscal health of our state. The current administration made headlines when it sued to put Chrysler out of business – and in doing so putting 5,000 workers out of a job. Hoosiers deserve better.”

One proposal he has is to use “link deposits,” where the state puts a certain amount of money in a bank and the bank in turn offers a lower student loan rate or aid for women, veteran and minority businesses.