IN Focus headlines: Ritz drops out, Pence orders BMV inquiry, Indy mayoral candidates talk housing

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INDIANAPOLIS (Aug. 9, 2015) - Here's a recap of the political news making headlines Sunday morning:

Ritz drops out 

State Superintendent Glenda Ritz has dropped out of the race for governor and will instead focus on seeking re-election as state superintendent.

Ritz made the announcement Friday.

The state's top educator jumped into the governor's race after repeatedly clashing with Gov. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) over education policy.

Ritz's campaign faced problems with complaints filed over possible campaign finance law violations. Ritz claimed they were clerical errors.

"The best use of my time and talents will be to serve our children, their families and the taxpayers of Indiana as superintendent of public instruction," Ritz said in a statement.

BMV ethics investigation 

The Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles is in hot water again.

Gov. Mike Pence has called for a formal ethics investigation into a former top bureau official.

The inquiry stems from a questionable fee that was charged when drivers received a title and registration for their vehicles at private license branches.

Former BMV chief of staff Shawn Walters is being investigated. He took a job with the private licensing company that issued those fees in question.

"We're looking into the matter," Pence said. "We're in the process of not only to improve the back office, but we're looking at a broad range of proposals to streamline the code and clarify the way the BMV serves the people of Indiana."

The race for Indianapolis mayor

The race to become the next mayor of Indianapolis is taking a turn toward the city's abandoned properties.

Democrat Joe Hogsett has a plan to tear down thousands of abandoned homes.

The last time the city counted its empty houses and lots was in 2003. The number was near 10,000.

"Those houses will be rehabilitated or town down after close consultation with local neighborhood groups," Hogsett said.

Republican candidate Chuck Brewer said he will look to faith-based partners for support.

"There are programs through the Indy Chamber that are taking chances, very small micro-loans on young entrepreneurs," Brewer said. "And we've seen that start to work."