There is an plenty of noise coming out of the Stark County Dog Pound these days and it isn't the barking dogs at the pound that the SCPR is referring to.
The barking is not "dog" barking but "political" barking that should have Stark Countians attention these days.
The political barking became apparent to SCPR with the hiring of former commissioner Tom Harmon's stepson (Jesse Boron) by Commissioners Bosley and Ferguson during commissioners last meeting in December as "deputy Dog Warden."
CLICK HERE see the SCPR's original blog on the Boron hiring.
Since that blog, The Report has gotten a lot of input about the goings on at the Stark County Dog Pound.
The most significant contributor in terms of position?
Stark Commissioner Todd Bosley.
Bosley says things are a mess at the pound (hint: he is not talking about animal droppings) and that he wants to hold Evert Gibson (Stark County's dog warden) accountable, but that he has/had not been able to get Commissioner Pete Ferguson and former commissioner Tom Harmon (and his predecessor Gayle Jackson) to deal with Gibson.
The SCPR was surprised when Bosely agreed to the Boron hiring in the first place because nothing in Boron's resume suggests that he has any particular qualifications for being the deputy.
The Report was skeptical of Bosley when he said that Boron being Harmon's stepson (and being former Nimishillen Township clerk Carlene Boron's son - Bosley served with Boron on the Nimishillen Board of Trustees) was not a factor in his voting to hire Boron.
Bosley said that neither Harmon nor Boron-Harmon asked him to support son Jesse for the deputy job.
For the SCPR, denials like Bosley's are never enough because very rarely these days; are powerful political figures audacious enough to make direct demands. When politically-based hiring occur, it is more of the "wink and a nod" variety. Or, perhaps, an elected official anticipated that "so-and-so" would appreciate seeing a relative, friend, neighbor or political loyalist hired.
The latter case, the SCPR believes, was demonstrated by Stark County recorder Rick Campbell when he hired Stark County Democratic political powerhouse Randy Gonzalez's son Kody as his chief deputy at a $50,000 plus annual salary.
Campbell denies that politics was at play in his mind when he appointed Gonzalez and that the hiring was because of the superior qualities as a potential employee that Campbell detected of Gonzalez in their pre-employment interactions.
In the Boron situation, it is beginning to look to The Report that Bosley "may" be correct in saying that the Harmon connection had nothing to do with the commissioners appointing Boron.
While the SCPR does not agree with Bosley's rationale, "hiring Boron" according to Bosley, was designed to save Stark County from - in Bosley's/Ferguson's opinion - lesser qualified candidates from getting the job; one of whom was the hand picked candidate of Warden Gibson.
The SCPR posits that there was a better approach.
The commissioners should have "re-bid" the job and given the job availability the widest possible public dissemination.
In any event, all this flap has resulted in the SCPR becoming interested in digging into into the quality of "dog pounding" going on in Stark County and finding out what, if any, political machinations - as alleged - have been going on or continue to go on at taxpayer expense.
The SCPR has began asking questions of the principals involved and examining public records in an endeavor to assess whether or not Stark County taxpayers are getting what they should be getting, in terms of quality of "non-politicized" services in the context of pound administration, out of the Stark County Dog Pound.
In a few days the SCPR should have a "first" installment of a series as to what The Report is finding.