IN Focus: Kenley retiring from state Senate

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.– State Sen. Luke Kenley (R-Noblesville) announced Wednesday he will retire from the Indiana Senate in September after 25 years.

Kenley has served Senate District 20 since 1992. The district currently includes portions of Hamilton County and has previously included portions of Grant, Howard, Madison and Tipton counties.

Prior to his time in the Senate, he served 15 years as a Noblesville city court judge and two-and-a-half years in the United States Army.

He will retire on Sept. 30.

In the video above, Kenley talks about his decision to retire in an interview that aired on this week's edition of IN Focus.

“It’s been my privilege to serve the people of Senate District 20 at the Statehouse for the last 25 years,” Kenley said. “I’ve been honored to join with so many outstanding legislators as we have worked to move Indiana forward. During my final session, we achieved two major goals – passing another strong balanced budget and developing a long-term road funding plan for Indiana. It’s now time for others to have the opportunity to serve Hamilton County and our great state.”

Since 2009, Kenley has chaired the Senate Committee on Appropriations. He helped lead efforts in 2003 to eliminate the state’s inventory tax and sponsored legislation in 2013 to do away with the state’s inheritance tax.

In 2005, he sponsored legislation that led to the construction of Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, which attracts millions of entertainment and tourism dollars to central Indiana each year. The stadium’s construction was also key to Indianapolis hosting Super Bowl XLVI in 2012.

Senate President Pro Tem David Long (R-Fort Wayne) praised Kenley’s service.

“Luke Kenley has been an integral member of the Senate Republican Caucus for more than two decades,” Long said. “Luke’s experience, integrity, intellect, Hoosier common sense, and genuine love for our state and its people have helped him be one of the most effective and influential public servants of our generation. In particular, his steadfast efforts to maintain Indiana’s fiscal responsibility have directly benefited every Hoosier taxpayer and led to Indiana building a national reputation as an economic leader. Luke will be greatly missed in the Senate.”

Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb issued this statement:

“Few understand the intricacies of Indiana’s finances like Luke Kenley. He has been an essential state-budget architect for years and years, and he is widely respected for both his expertise and his no-nonsense approach to lawmaking. Even though he is moving on to the next chapter in his life, many will continue to seek his counsel—including me. So, even though he won’t be in the Senate Chamber come January, and he’ll have a little more time to spend at his ranch in Texas, he will continue to contribute to our state’s success in countless ways.”