It should be obvious to one and all that the city of Canton Healy adminstration is in crisis. Exactly what Canton and Stark County needs in a time of national, state and local economic severely troubled times.
Earlier in January, Safety Director Thomas Nesbitt tries to jump ship by applying for a 9-1-1 post.
Mayor Healy pushes Services Director and Chief-of-Staff Thomas Bernabei overboard (fires) - according to a call from an elected official to the STARK COUNTY POLITICAL REPORT (The Report).
Earlier this month Bernbei was subjected to questioning by the FBI about whether or not there was any connection between campaign contributions received by Team Healy, if any, from a trio of Cuyahoga County political figures and a switch ordered by Healy to 1-888OhioComp (a workers' compensation processing company).
One step further.
Is there any connection with Bernabei's firing and the answers he gave the FBI? Or, is the reason that Bernabei has too much clout among administration staffers and most members of Canton City Council.
The Report has recounted previously on reports that Bernabei had assumed the role of being de facto mayor in light of the crisis atmosphere that is enveloping Canton City Hall.
The Report has been hearing for months of ongoing friction between the mayor and city council. Asked by The Report about these report, Bernabei acknowledge that there were problems but that he (Bernabei) had a handle on matters and that there was a working relationship between council and the mayor.
Another possible reason is that there is a dispute as between Mayor Healy and Canton City Council as to whether or not the contemplated Cooperative Economic Development Agreement (CEDA) being proposed by Council is good for Canton.
De facto, leader Bill Smuckler (Don Casar is the de jure leader) is pushing the CEDA. The Report believes that Healy may remain opposed to the council initiative (primarily because of the 99 year agreement not to annex) and, perhaps, blames Bernabei for not managing council effectively on the Canton/Jackson Township dance.
The Repository's coverage of the firing today has the following in terms of Healy's evaluation of Bernabei:
In a written job performance review on July 25, 2008, Bernabei scored 49 of a possible 50 points. In it, Healy noted Bernabei was “across the board — great,” and “I am honored to have you as Chief of Staff.”Why do you think Bernabei got fired?