Thursday, December 4, 2008


If it works, Stark County Commissioner Todd Bosley's Plan to get a "state of the art" 9-1-1 up and running in the county will prove be a political coup of sorts that will make the name Todd Bosley one the most remembered and appreciated political names in the annals of Stark County political history.

On the other hand, proposing a tax hike to fund the plan could prove to be Bosley's undoing in November, 2010 when he has to run again. Then he will rest on the heap of little remembered former commissioners who incurred the public's ire for proposing/proposing tax increases.

Which will it be?

It's anybody's guess right now.

Clearly, if Stark County's emergency forces have any kind of political clout with the electorate, it will be the former and not the latter.

This is the "opportunity of the century" (well, not quite but what's the harm in a little hyperbole) for Stark County to get it's 9-1-1 system in top notch shape.

But there is scrutiny. And that is good. But assessments can be screwy.

Right-out-of-the-shoot The Repository ediitorial staff has gotten into the discussion.

A Repository editor posted this piece on Tuesday (the day Bosley officially made his proposal).

Note that the writer says that the "[c]ommissioners need to do at least ... four things if they want to have a prayer of getting public support"
Supplement the planned public hearings Dec. 22 and 29 with an invitation to residents to mail, fax or e-mail their comments and concerns. If they truly want to hear public opinion before acting, make it easy for residents to have their say.

Be prepared to help individual taxpayers figure out how the change is likely to affect them. Will it really save them money? Show them how.

Show the public what the county is doing to save money. And take seriously the inevitable response that there is more fat to cut.

Abandon the idea of making the 0.5 percent tax permanent. Stark Countians rightly expect the accountability that time-limited taxes ensure.

The STARK COUNTY POLITICAL REPORT (The Report) takes issue with the last of the editorial writer's list. No, no, no! Bosley's proposal has to be continuing (permanent is the wrong word to use).

Part of the proposal for the new revenue raising measure calls for the termination of the original 9-1-1 levy, which - when it passed - was to continue indefintely. So no levy is permanent. When circumstances change, so called "permanent levies" do get abandoned.

Stark County gets an effective 9-1-1 up and running, only to dismantle it because a future renewal tax issue fails to pass? Huh?

All that remains is for the Bosley funding plan to get approved.

The Report offers the following video of Stark County Council of Government Governing Committee chair Randy Gonzalez detailing how "ready" his committee is to get this project implemented.

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