Friday, May 22, 2015

#4 - THE SCPR "BOTTOM 10" (I.E. WORST) STARK COUNTY POLITICAL SUBDIVISION ELECTED OFFICIALS


UPDATE:  9:00 AM


ENCORE
VIDEO

MAYOR KATHY CATAZARO-PERRY
MAKES "RACISM & SEXISM"
CHARGES
AGAINST
MASSLLON CITY COUNCIL

This blog is the seventh in a series of 10 blogs until the tenth one in which The Stark County Political Report will name the absolutely worst Stark County political subdivision "elected" official.

Indeed, we have reached the midpoint of the list most viewed of any series that the SCPR has ever done in the blogs' seven plus years of existence.

To those elected officials who have captured the SCPR's attention enough to have made the list: CONGRATULATIONS!

For those readers who are just catching up with the list, here are links to these previous selectees:
To be sure, there are some pretty bad "un-elected" ones, but the SCPR's focus in this series is of the "elected" variety.

The Report has asked readers to weigh-in as to whom will achieve the dubious distinction of being Stark County's worst from among the list of county, village, city and board of education officials who have convinced their respective constituents to vote for them.

Interestingly enough, two respondents to yours truly's request that readers send their guess to tramols@att.net has successfully figured out the name of the official who will be blessed in a few days with the unveiling of the absolutely worst - in the opinion of SCPR - Stark County political subdivision elected official.

To boot, in recent days a high level Stark County "elected" official whispered that officials name into the ear of yours truly and BINGO! that official hit the jackpot as to whom #1 is.

The "winner" is NOT a member of the Maier Massillon Political Machine (MMPM).

We all just heard a sigh of relief - didn't we? - from Kathy, Johnnie, Jr., Phil, George, and the like.

Today, "Mayor Kathy" (the affectionate title applied to her by her ardent supporters) Catazaro-Perry is the yours truly's choice for the #4 spot on the SCPR 10 Worst "Elected" [Stark County political sudivision] Officials list.

Having achieved the #4 position the list, Catazaro-Perry has to be the envy of the rest of the elected officials within the bevy of those who comprise what the SCPR calls the Maier Massillon Political Machine (MMPM).

But the remaining aspirants still have hope that one if not three of them can attain #3 on the list.

Numbers 2 and 1 are reserved for others.

So tomorrow, those remaining MMPM elected officials should be up bright and early to learn whether or not one of them attains a more prominent place on the bottom 10 list of Stark County worst elected officials list than Mayor Kathy.

The Report is betting that one of them will best Mayor Kathy.

Recently, the SCPR had a conversation with a Stark County political subdivision elected official who wanted to go on, and on, and on about Mayor Catazaro-Perry's "good works" out in the Stark County high society where Noblesse Oblige is a mandatory quality and characteristic in order to part of high society.

And God Bless the mayor for her good works for the less fortunate among us.

But that does not "an effective mayor" make her.

As the SCPR has written from the time that talk started about her running for mayor, she was not and continues not to be up to being mayor.

And that pains The Report to say.

For the SCPR is one of Stark County's foremost advocates for women taking their place as every bit the equals of men as leaders in Stark County government, elected and unelected.

Unfortunately, Catazaro-Perry does not bring her own qualities to bear on being mayor of Massillon.


Perhaps, if she were to, she might find out that the wizards she relies on are not all that wizardly.

It is well known that there is a well-worn pathway between the Mayor's office and that of Clerk of Courts Johnnie A. Maier, Jr. (the Massillon Municipal Court) and his protege and chief deputy R. Shane Jackson.

The common understanding is that Mayor Kathy not make any chief executive officer of Massillon decision without it passing muster with Maier, Jr. and Jackson.

Therein lies her problem.

It could be (noting her touted "good works" effectiveness) that buried deep within the mayor there are qualities that if released would make her an effective mayor that would place her in the annals of being one of the all time great mayors of Massillon.

Someone has convinced Mayor Kathy that she is not up to the task of being her own person as Massillon's mayor.

From day one as mayor (January 1, 2012), she has adopted a combative relationship with Massillon City Council which continues to this day as evidenced by the rejection of the Massillon Financial Planning and Supervision Commission (MFP&SC) of the joint proposal (Restoration Plan) signed onto by herself and council to bring Massillon out of fiscal emergency status imposed on the city by the State of Ohio Auditor (SOA) on the initiative of the mayor herself.

With last Tuesday's MFP&SC rejection (which Catazaro-Perry joined in) of the Restoration Plan, the SCPR thinks that it is becoming "bigger than life itself" that Massillon departments of government will soon be ordered by the MFP&SC to make 15% across-the-board cuts.

This for a city that barely qualified to be placed in fiscal emergency in the first place.

There are six criteria, one of which an Ohio government entity has to meet in order to have the dubious distinction as being designated as being in fiscal emergency.

Massillon qualified on the basis of having a cash flow problem.

Much of the deficit in cash flow, the SCPR thinks, was bogus in terms of being based on "real" numbers and therefore the current "in the black" status pretty much as occurred on the correction of errant data.

The Report thinks that the idea of Catazaro-Perry pushing and pushing for the SOA determination had to do with the mayor's advisers (Maier, Jr., Jackson and perhaps Judge Eddie Elum [who apparently does not have enough to keep him busy as judge]) understanding the dynamic what the immediately preceding paragraph of this blog outlines.

Understanding same, The Report believes, gave birth to  "a political Aha! moment" among the mayor's deep thinkers.

Why not capitalize on the cash flow problem created by former Mayor Frank Cicchinelli's administration by insisting on a SOA determination of fiscal emergency and thereby set up a easily resolved in not self-resolving remedy and make Mayor Kathy appear to be a financial miracle worker?

Unfortunately, for everyday Massillonians the fix is not as easily fixed as the deep thinkers might have thought.

Since Massillon has not had new tax infusion revenues (except for a small Parks and Recreation levy) since 1976, it seems that it has been discovered by the MFP&SC that the revenue stream going forward will not sustain absolutely needed increased projected expenditures due to:
  • an ever present inflation factor (though low, it is real), 
  • an aging vehicle fleet, 
  • being way behind in road and street repairs,
  • an inadequate safety forces manning factor, and
  • other "lurking" infrastructure problems
One way or another Massillonians will have to pass an increase in revenues by an income tax increase or property tax increase.

Hence, the political gambit (in one buys into the SCPR take on what the mayor and her "Kitchen Cabinet" concocted in the deep recesses of their ruminations) may well come back to haunt the mayor.

Once "the genie is let out of the bottle," getting it back in "ain't" so easy.

That's what political manipulators for personal political benefit do to the unsuspecting public all across America.

And that's the dilemma the SCPR thinks the easily used Mayor Kathy Catazaro-Perry (not originally a Massillonian) by the hand of two of her politically calculating chief advisers (Maier, a resident of Tuscarawas Township; Jackson a resident of Perry Township) have put Massillonians into.

It is one thing if politicians "get hoisted by their own petard."

One can even take a delight when that happens to them.

But for day-in, day-out Massillonians to get caught up in what the SCPR thinks is at its heart an instance of political gamesmanship is truly outrageous.

Such is why many politicians are held in utter disdain by workaday Americans.

There are other  bas├Ęs on which the SCPR could rest in making Mayor Kathy Catazaro-Perry #4 on the the list of the worst elected political subdivision officials in Stark County government.

One that Mayor Kathy should never be permitted to forget is the Massillon City Council meeting in which she accused council of being racist and sexist for questioning the fiscal viability in hiring Dwan St. John as a member of Mayor Kathy's administration.



But the "fiscal emergency status" thing seems to The Report to be what yours truly thinks was politically contrived set up designed over the longer term to make Kathy look good for re-election" scheme is in and of itself ground enough to to justify the #4 designation.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

BREAKING NEWS!!! CICCHINELLI & BERNABEI "LAWYERED UP" FOR FIGHT TO BE ON NOVEMBER BALLOT AS "INDEPENDENT."

UPDATED:  05/21/2015 at 5:15 p.m.

HEALY PREPARES FOR FIGHT, TOO!

Tom Bernabei retains Allen Schulman to represent him and William J. Healy, II retains Lee Plakas to represent him on the issue of whether or not Bernabei is certifiable as an "independent" candidate for mayor of Canton versus Democrat Healy.

Stark County Board of Elections to meet on June 17, 2015 at 08:30 a.m. to decide the question.


REPUBLICATION:  Originally published Wednesday afternoon at about 5:00 p.m.

UPDATED:  05/21/2015 AT 3:30 p.m.



WHEN IS CATAZARO-PERRY 
GOING TO GET LAWYERED UP?

BOE (MATTHEWS & MULLANE) RESPONSE



CONLEY'S LETTER TO BOARD OF ELECTIONS



The Stark County Political Report spoke former Massillon mayor (24 years) Frank Cicchinelli a couple of days ago about what he has in mind in terms of qualifying for certification on June 17th by the Stark County Board of Elections (SC-BOE) as an "independent" candidate for mayor against the woman (Kathy Catazaro-Perry) who defeated in the Democratic primary election of 2011 then easily defeated Republican Lee Brunckhart in the ensuing November election.

In the 2011 primary election, Cicchinelli did not campaign as he knew he should have.

Catazaro-Perry was then and remains the candidate of the Maier Massillon Political Machine put together by and run by former Stark County Democratic Party chairman Johnnie A. Maier, Jr. who is currently the Massillon Municipal Court clerk of courts.

Cicchinelli tells the SCPR that if he makes the ballot which he says he is confident he will, in the 2015 general election his primary opponent and her backers will see a much different Francis H. Cicchinelli, Jr. than they saw in 2011.

The politics of his getting certified by the BOE may be the toughest part of his fight according to his attorney Craig T. Conley.

Conley a well known civic activist who gave the MMPM fits in their successful fight to get Johnnie's brother George T. Maier on the November, 2014 general election ballot which in won by a narrow margin against Republican Larry Dordea in what was a banner election year for statewide Republicans even in Stark County.

The SCPR has not seen ticket-splitting of the likes of the 2014 general election for many, many of a moon.

Not only did Maier pull a rabbit out of the hat in what should have been a Dordea victory, but so did Democrat Chryssa Hartnett in defeating Kasich's man (in the sense that Republican governor John Kasich appointed him in the first place in 2013 to replace retired Stark Court of Common Pleas judge V. Lee Sinclair [a Republican himself]) Curtis Werren.

Werren's race was markedly closer than Dordea's.  However, with his direct line to the governor who certainly was willing to and did try to help in Stark County proper, Werren's loss (and maybe Dordea's too) how utterly ineffective the organized Stark County Republican Party under the leadership of Board of Elections director Jeff Matthews is.


It is anybody's guess as how the Republican's BOE members Braden and Cline will vote on the Cicchinelli certification question.

Does anyone think that Dems' members Ferruccio and Sherer, Jr. would dare vote for certifying Cicchinelli if it became obvious to them that doing so would be politically incorrect?


In the contesting of certification of George T. Maier to qualify to be on the November, 2014 general election ballot, the MMPM's mantra was "let the voters decide."

Just call the SCPR cynical about the MMPM, but The Report has this sneaking suspicion that Johnnie A. Maier, Jr. et al will not be encouraging Dem BOE members Ferruccio and Sherer, Jr. to vote for Cicchinelli's certification.

Look for the "let the voters decide" refrain to be missing from lips of the Maier faction of the Stark County Democratic Party on the Cicchinelli certification question.

If the Republicans do vote to certify Cicchinelli, it is near certain that Republican secretary of state Jon Husted will break a tie for certification.

Otherwise, Conley will have to win for Cicchinelli on the legal front.

And he says that Cicchinelli has the case law in his favor.

#5 - THE SCPR "BOTTOM 10" (I.E. WORST) STARK COUNTY POLITICAL SUBDIVISION ELECTED OFFICIALS

UPDATED:  2:40 PM



This blog is the sixth in a series of 10 blogs until the tenth one in which The Stark County Political Report will name the absolutely worst Stark County political subdivision "elected" official.

Indeed, we have reached the midpoint of the list most viewed of any series that the SCPR has ever done in the blogs' seven plus years of existence.

To those elected officials who have captured the SCPR's attention enough to have made the list: CONGRATULATIONS!

For those readers who are just catching up with the list, here are links to the previous three selectees:
To be sure, there are some pretty bad "un-elected" ones, but the SCPR's focus in this series is of the "elected" variety.

The Report has asked readers to weigh-in as to whom will achieve the dubious distinction of being Stark County's worst from among the list of county, village, city and board of education officials who have convinced their respective constituents to vote for them.

Interestingly enough, one respondent to yours truly's request that readers send their guess to tramols@att.net has successfully figured out the name of the official who will be blessed in a few days with the unveiling of the absolutely worst - in the opinion of SCPR - Stark County political subdivision elected official.

For those readers who want to join the elite group of successful guessers, here is a clue:

The "winner" is NOT a member of the Maier Massillon Political Machine (MMPM).

We all just heard a sigh of relief - didn't we? - from Kathy, Johnnie, Jr., Phil, George, and the like.

However, some of those devotees to the MMPM need to keep their fingers crossed in hopes that they will place somewhere in the remaining four slots.

Remember, none of them made the top spot.  Sorry guys!

Better luck in the next quarterly report.

Today's honoree is Stark County's top escape artist who over his 7-1/2 years as mayor of Canton has survived one self-inflicted scrape after another, and another seemingly on into infinity; namely, William J. Healy, II.

In order to accomplish his Houdini-esque feats, he has had to be Stark County's slickest politician ever, no?

When one looks at his campaign finance reports, it is interesting to see some of the names that appear on his latest list of contributors, to wit:


And Healy's to them:


The SCPR has a high regard for Councilpersons Mack and Mariol, especially Mack and his power of discernment, and therefore find it interesting that Healy has apparently convinced them that he - the mayor - is the real deal and is on way to solving Canton's many problems.

The Mack and Mariol justifications for having helped Healy defeat Kim Perez in the recently concluded Democratic primary are of the "hope and a prayer" variety to the SCPR.

As the SCPR understands Mack's and Mariol's rationale in connecting with the Healy mayoralty campaign is that they feared that Perez as mayor would undo all the work that Canton City Council has invested in the rebuilding of Canton.

While councilpersons ought to work with the executive branch for the betterment of Canton, making financial contributions to Healy's campaign is tantamount - the SCPR thinks - to an endorsement with the way Healy has been or, if not that but rather going forward, will administer the city.

Sorry guys, I don't see Healy as anything other than being a "smoke and mirrors" mayor as long as he is in office using political manipulation as his preferred tool

Of course, when they threw their lot in with Healy they did not know that Tom Bernabei's "independent" candidacy was coming.

If Bernabei makes it to the ballot, are they going to be sticking with Healy?

Stay tuned on that one.

Another thing to note about Healy's campaign finance reports is the erosion of Stark County Democratic officials and public figures contributions from his 2014 Annual Campaign Finance Report.

Go back and review the 2015 pre-primary list published above.

Now look at the 2014 report:



Quite an erosion, no?

In the 2015 report about 60% of the contributors were from outside Canton and approximately 25% were from outside Ohio.


Interesting, no?

The SCPR holds the distinction of having totally frustrated Hizzhonor in being unaffected by his "carrot and stick" approach to politics.

Healy has ignored, yelled at and sweet talked yours truly; all to no avail in his quest to influence what appears in these pages about his comings and goings as mayor of the Stark County county seat.

The latest episode in the rocky relationship going back to the beginnings of his administration occurred at Canton City Council meeting of May 11th.

Here's the video.

The way the SCPR assesses his turning ugly on the 11th has to do with his realization that "the [being mayor] gig is up" if his former service director and chief of staff (his very first one) Tom Bernabei makes it to November's ballot as an "independent."

Who knows, the guy might be back to sweet talking next week?

Rather than bore readers with a recitation of all his self-inflicted political injuries, here are a few links to blogs the SCPR has done since January, 2007 about the mayor.

What's worse for Stark Countians living within the boundary of Canton is that despite his many, many, many "spins" about the good things happening in the Hall of Fame City during his tenure as mayor, it appears to the SCPR that at best is stagnant if not continuing to slide.

There are pockets of Canton which have a poverty rate in the range of 40% which has persisted if not increased during William J. Healy, II's reign as the city's chief executive officer.

The streets and roadways are an absolute mess.

Demolition of abandoned residents lag.

Healy plays with Canton's crime rate numbers as if he were playing volleyball with them.

The mayor loves to take folks aside and say something like this:  "I can't tell you the specifics because negotiations are at a sensitive stage, but we are on the cusp of a REALLY BIG economic development job producing deal."

And nothing or very little materializes.

Healy has had nearly eight years to right the Ship of State Canton, but has failed to do so.


Accordingly, he is richly deserving of being ranked #5 on the SCPR 10 Stark County Worst Elected Officials list.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

ENTIRE 'VIDEO' OF MASSILLON FINANCIAL PLANNING & SUPERVISION COMMITTEE MEETING OF MAY 19, 2015


#6 - THE SCPR "BOTTOM 10" (I.E. WORST) STARK COUNTY POLITICAL SUBDIVISION ELECTED OFFICIALS



This blog is the fifth in a series of 10 blogs until the tenth one in which The Stark County Political Report will name the absolutely worst Stark County political subdivision "elected" official.

Indeed, we have reached the midpoint of the list most viewed of any series that the SCPR has ever done in the blogs' seven plus years of existence.

To those elected officials who have captured the SCPR's attention enough to have made the list: CONGRATULATIONS!

For those readers who are just catching up with the list, here are links to the previous three selectees:
To be sure, there are some pretty bad "un-elected" ones, but the SCPR's focus in this series is of the "elected variety."

The Report has asked readers to weigh-in as to whom will achieve the dubious distinction of being Stark County's worst from among the list of county, village, city and board of education officials who have convinced their respective constituents to vote for them.

Interestingly enough, one respondent to yours truly's request that readers send their guess to tramols@att.net has successfully figured out the name of the official who will be blessed in a few days with the unveiling of the absolutely worst - in the opinion of SCPR - Stark County political subdivision elected official.

For those readers who want to join the elite group of successful guessers, here is a clue.

The "winner" is NOT a member of the Maier Massillon Political Machine (MMPM).

We all just heard a sigh of relief - didn't we? - from Kathy, Johnnie, Jr., Phil, George, and the like.

However, some of those devotees to the MMPM need to keep their fingers crossed in hopes that they will place somewhere in the remaining five slots.

Remember, none of them made the top spot.  Sorry guys!

Better luck in the next quarterly report.

Today's honoree is always "dressed to the nines" Canton City councilman; namely, Jimmy Babcock.

All the other SCPR honorees on this list are folks who proactively - in the opinion of The Report - damage Stark County political subdivision government (villages, cities, townships, boards of education or the county itself) either in the entity's procedures or substance of government.

But probably not Councilman Jimmy Babcock.

He is just there.  An empty suit.  Taking up space.  So thinks the SCPR.

Even the staid Repository editors seem to see Babcock that way.

In its April 24, 2015 endorsement editorial, this - in part - is what The Rep editors had to say:
Babcock, an incumbent who’s asking for a third term, believes the city should knock down entire blocks of blighted homes at a time and empower neighborhood associations to play a key role in revitalization, among other good ideas. 
Babcock, however, has failed to articulate this vision on the floor of City Council. He can become more effective by taking a more active role in deliberations and offering his ideas through legislation. (color change and underlining for emphasis)
If his last name was not Babcock, Jimmy probably would not have graced the rolls of Canton council.

His mother Mary served for 24 years.  And his father Charles was a one-time mayor of Canton.

It did take awhile for Jimmy to become an elected official as he failed in a bid to become mayor and state representative.

In 2011 he "caught lightning in a bottle"


What Babcock is really good at is not being an effective city councilman (though he looks the part) but rather getting mad, "really, really, really" mad at the SCPR.

For The Report's part, Babcock is kind of like a gnat that one keeps swatting at to shoo away.

But those darned gnats, one seemingly can never, ever get rid of them.

Back in 2012 (LINK to blog on the matter) he lashed out at The Report for not supporting his "political father" Kim Perez 's candidacy for Canton treasurer.

Babcock worked for Perez from the time he took office on being elected Stark County auditor in 2004 until his defeat by Republican Alan Harold in 2010.

He had to be crushed when Mayor William J.  "Turn-the-Camera-off-Martin" Healy, II recently defeated Perez in the May 5, 2015 Democratic election.

Yours truly is waiting for Babcock to come rushing up to The Report's backside with a diatribe on how the SCPR caused Perez's defeat.

As readers know, The Report got on Prosecutor John Ferrero's case big time over his handling of what yours truly thought was nothing but a political fuss and/or mis-communication involving Marlboro police chief Ron Devies and son Kyle and a couple of the-then Marlboro trustees one of whom is the brother of a former "on the staff of John Ferrero" prosecutor.

That is the first item that yours truly recalls Babcock getting supremely agitated with the SCPR.  To parapharse:  "Why are you all over John Ferrero's case," he protested.

Next up was the Perez for treasurer thing.

And, recently, he took his most aggressive stance in blindsiding yours truly over a SCPR blog assessment that Ward 3 council candidate Ryan Brahler (Babcock's cousin), though ostensibly a Healy supporter in the recently concluded Healy/Perez mayoralty contest, was in reality a Perez supporter.



It is the SCPR's experience that when a public official reacts as vehemently as Babcock did on the Brahler blog, it generally means The Report has hit a sore point of one sort or another.

Babcock as if to ice his point had his "friend for life" Perez e-mail The Report with "word from God Almighty himself" (apparently) that Brahler was not a secret supporter.

And that may have been the case.

But the SCPR doubts that given Jimmy's undying devotion to Perez?

If he gets on yours truly about Perez running for treasury matter, he going to abide cousin Ryan supporting Healy?

Of course, it is likely that neither Perez or Healy wanted to be tied to Brahler given an incident in which Brahler (then, the president of the Canton City Schools Board of Education [CCS-BOE]) verbally went after a basketball official at a McKinley girls basketball game which resulted in Brahler resigning his CCS-BOE position.

Fortunately, Brahler was not elected on May 5th to be the uncontested Democratic Party nominee in November.

Despite retiring Ward 3 councilman Jim "I just love being a councilman" Griffin supporting Brahler, the voters of Ward 3 chose wisely in voting Jason Scaglione in.

As The Report sees it, he would have been a cousin Jimmy clone in terms of how the councilman-at-large conducts himself in the legislative part of his Canton council work.

Jimmy Babcock is the complete opposite of the person who the SCPR thinks may put Babcock on the outside of council looking in.


Yes, "independent" Councilman Richard Hart.

Hart, though political hobbled by virtue of being an "independent" in a sea of Democrats, has and continues to make his mark in council.

This past week he has made a proposal to locate a wildlife zoo in land owned by Canton in Pike Township (East Sparta).

The Report thinks Hart is a bit-over-the-top in his claim that such a project could surpass the Hall of Fame Village project, the point is this:  Hart is a proactive councilman whereas Babcock is not.

Some people in defense of Babcock might take the position of "no harm, no foul."

The SCPR's position is that each and every Canton councilperson needs to "step-up-to-the-plate" and offer ideas,  concrete legislative proposals and energy to the quest to rescue Canton from its seeming slide into oblivion.

Babcock has not done so and the SCPR sees him as being a hanger-oner  going forward and therefore deserving of being #6 on the SCPR list of the county subdivision's worst elected officials.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

BREAKING NEWS!!! MASSILLON FINANCIAL PLANNING & SUPERVISION COMMISSION "REJECTS" MASSILLON CITY COUNCIL/MAYOR'S RESTORATION PLAN!

UPDATE 07:20 PM



At about 3:15 this afternoon, members (Member Yund absent) of the Massillon Financial Planning and Supervision Commission unanimously rejected the joint mayor/council submission of a financial restoration plan at its regular monthly meeting held at the Massillon Area Chamber of Commerce Conference Center in downtown Massillon.

The Stark County Political Report interprets remarks made in explaining the rejection (principally by members Hanrahan, Gessner and Campbell) to be not so much on the plan but on a lack of convincing commission members that there is "a reasonable certainty" that the plan can be implemented.


#7 - THE SCPR "BOTTOM 10" (I.E. WORST) STARK COUNTY POLITICAL SUBDIVISION ELECTED OFFICIALS

UPDATED:  9:00 AM



This blog is the fourth in a series of 10 blogs until the tenth one in which The Stark County Political Report will name the absolutely worst Stark County political subdivision "elected" official.

For those readers who are just catching up with the list, here are links to the previous three selectees:
To be sure, there are some pretty bad "un-elected" ones, but the SCPR's focus in this series is of the "elected variety."

The Report has asked readers to weigh-in as to whom will achieve the dubious distinction of being Stark County's worst from among the list of county, village, city and board of education officials who have convinced their respective constituents to vote for them.

Interestingly enough, one respondent to yours truly's request that readers send their guess to tramols@att.net has successfully figured out the name of the official who will be blessed in a few days with the unveiling of the absolutely worst - in the opinion of SCR - Stark County political subdivision elected official.

For those readers who want to join the elite group of successful guessers, here is a clue.

The "winner" is NOT a member of the Maier Massillon Political Machine (MMPM).

We all just heard a sigh of relief - didn't we? - from Kathy, Johnnie, Jr., Phil, George, and the like.

However, some of those devotees to the MMPM need to keep their fingers crossed in hopes that they will place somewhere in the remaining six slots.

Remember, none of them made the top spot.  Sorry guys!

Better luck in the next quarterly report.

Today's honoree is the president of the North Canton City Council; namely, Daniel "Jeff" Peters, both individually as a member of North Canton's council and in the representational sense for the entire council in his capacity as the council leader.


More than any other North Canton Council member, Peters (representing North Canton Ward 2), the SCPR thinks, as the-then personnel committee chair, was the lead councilperson in bringing former Ward 3 councilman (for the briefest period of time) Tim Fox on board as North Canton's "UNelected" law director.

The Report  thinks that Peters and his council fellows hired Fox with the understanding that he would "figuratively" crack the heads of those North Canton citizen activist who highlighted the short comings of council members.

And, The Report, believes that Fox has not disappointed and that accordingly Fox will remain North Canton's law director until such time as the make up of council changes.

Among Stark County city councils (i.e. the major cities, Alliance, Canton, Massillon and North Canton), North Canton's is clearly the belligerent, hostile and anti-democratic/republican in tone vis-a-vis the its constituent public.

Today's selectee as an individual in face-to-face encounters seems not to fit the tone described above.

But as the expression "appearances can be deceiving" suggests, the SCPR thinks Peters rivals the obviously most antagonistic member of North Canton Council in applying a "adversariness" litmus test to each of North Canton's councilpersons.

The unnamed (in this blog) "most antagonistic" councilperson gets a much higher spot (#2) on the SCPR Bottom 10 "Worst" Stark County Political Subdivision list because that person has a trait or two or so more obnoxious to wholesome public service than does Peters.

Below is an example shared with the SCPR by former North Canton councilman Chuck Osborne.

By the way, Osborne has filed as a candidate for the council seat now held by Republican Stephanie Werren, wife of Curtis Werren who, in January, received a second appointment by Republican governor John Kasich as a Stark County political subdivison judge, Werren having lost to Democrat Chryssa Hartnett in November, 2014 on a Common Pleas Court judgeship.

But first let it be said that Peters is likely to object that North Canton's foremost community activist is the personification of the expression:  "these are times that try mens' souls."

And the SCPR has written a blog or two about Osborne's testiness.


To sum it up, it is the SCPR's take that Osborne is more a help than a hindrance in the effort to make North Canton City Council as a whole more hospitable, more responsive and more democratic-republican values friendly than it has demonstrated since former council president and mayor of North Canton Daryl Revoldt left.


Revoldt had the wisdom and the maturity to deal with Osborne.

Peters' et al to their discredit in Osborne's case try to focus on - to some - his irritating manner so as a scapegoat to divert attention from council's manifest inadequacies.

Peters does not possess Revoldt's leadership qualities as witness the following extract from an e-mail copied to the SCPR yesterday:
Chuck Osborne  May 18 at 10:30 PM
... .
 
Attached you will find changes to the City’s Zoning Code, Chapter 1177 – titled Conditional and Similar Uses Permits that was passed by City Council as Ordinance 34-13 on June 10, 2013. Mayor David Held signed the legislation (He will sign whatever you put in front to him).

I have highlighted the affected areas between the draft version containing the changes and the existing zoning Code at that time.

Clearly, Law Director Tim Fox had zeroed in on this area of the City’s Zoning code.

If you look at the area highlighted, the changes were simply cosmetic. What was then Section 1177.09, was simply carved up to create Section 1179.10 with no changes. Consequently, former Section 1177.10 – Appeal To Council had to be renumbered Section 1177.11.

Was anyone concerned at that time that the section 1177.10 titled, “Appeal To Council” violated the City Charter. Obviously NOT, as it was left in and simply renumbered Section 1177.11.

Why now has City Council suddenly taken the position that Section 1177.11 - Appeal To Council violated the City Charter. On April 27, 2015, Council voted to remove, in its entirety, Section 1177.11 saying it violated the City Charter. Ordinance 17-2015  was signed into law by Mayor David Held.

After the 3rd reading of Ordinance No. 17-2015, in which council deleted the “Appeal to Council” section, Council President Jeff Peters rushed to catch me as I was quickly leaving the Council Chamber out of utter disdain for North Canton City government . Grinning ear-to-ear and practically thumping his chest, Mr. Peters exclaimed that when I voted on the entire revision of the Zoning code in 2003 as a member of Council, that I had violated the City Charter in doing so. He repeated that statement over and over while just grinning like he had just discovered the Holy Grail.

Since that night, I have gone back and looked over the City’s current Zoning Code. A close examination shows the notation that just two years ago Council amended Chapter 1177 of the Zoning code with the passage of Ordinance No. 34-13 on June 10, 2013.  I realized that if Mr. Peter’s remarks to me were accurate and that section of the Zoning code violates the City Charter (which I do not believe it does), then Mr. Peters and all of Council violated the City Charter when they amended Chapter 1177 just two years ago.

And as for Marcia Kiesling and Doug Foltz, they voted with me in 2003 when the Zoning code was rewritten in its entirety. So does that mean they violated the City Charter on two occasions?

Mr. Jeff Peters thought he was just the smartest man in the world when he ran down the aisle to tell me that I had violated the City Charter.

The law in North Canton is what North Canton elected officials want it to be as interpreted by Law Director Tim Fox. They change the law when is does not suit their needs, or ignore the law and force citizens to go to the courts at great expense to force government to honor the laws they themselves have enacted.

North Canton City Council are not representatives of the citizens of North Canton by any stretch of the word. They are adversaries of the citizens. (emphasis added)

Thanks,
Chuck Osborne
A lot less annoying North Canton citizen activist (a candidate for North Canton Council for an "at-large" position) is Jamie McCleaster.

The Report thinks McCleaster (spokesperson for the Councerned Citizens of North Canton [CCNC]) is a model of decorum which demonstrates that it is a bum wrap on Osborne for North Canton Council to react to him seemingly because he is chronic in his pursuit of council and does not possess the pleasing manner that McCleaster does.


With North Canton Council, one's personality is not the real factor in whether or not a citizen gets its collective ear.

It appears to the SCPR that most, not all, of North Canton's councilpersons cannot handle critical evaluation of its legislative agenda and they get retributive in all too many instances.

McCleaster's e-mail of yesterday to the SCPR summarizes pretty well all that has gone wrong with council over the past few years, to wit:
Jamie McCleaster  May 18 at 7:09 AM
To Martin Olson 
Martin, 
I had initially resisted the temptation to weigh in, but I've seen in all the posts for the "Bottom 10" that you've been asking for input, or who readers think should be the bottom 1... I guess I'll bite. 
I think that North Canton City Council as a whole should get the bottom spot, given the previously reported; fight to get public records (although that has been a little better lately), the disregard of the will of the voters around healthcare (specifically Council President Peters, Kiesling, Werren, and former President/councilman Snyder), the willingness to keep Law Director Fox at his post, and the general "us vs them" antagonistic approach they take towards people who question their authority and view points. 
If I had to narrow it down further, I'd choose Kiesling, Werren, former President/councilman Snyder, and as the now "leader" of the bunch, Council President Peters, simply over the health insurance debacle. Maybe I'm old idealistic, but I think elected officials should represent those they're elected to serve, and not look for technicalities to usurp the people's vote (politics 101). Just my two cents. I'll be on the edge of my seat as you continue your count down! 
Talk to you soon. 
Sincerely,
Jamie McCleaster
Among North Canton councilpersons that McCleaster singles out in his e-mail as being deserving (Snyder does not qualify because is not currently an elected official), who will be the SCPR's #2?

We shall know in about a week.

In the meantime, keep checking daily as The Stark County Political Report's countdown to the absolutely worst Stark County Political Subdivision "elected" official continues.