Monday, June 13, 2011


For many Stark Countians, they "can wait until the cows come home" before state Representative J. Kirk Schuring delivers on any promises of getting legislative action done for them.

It's not that Schuring does not try.  It appears however that he has so little regard of his fellows in the Ohio General Assembly (OGA - including his stint in the Senate) that despite being in the body (OGA) for over 16 years, he has relatively little to show for himself.

His "really big splash" in his legislative career which started in 1995 was in 2008 as he prepared to run against the state Senator John Boccieri for the 16th District congressional seat that, as a state senator himself, he tried to persuade his fellow legislators to place a constitutional provision (supposedly to fix or go a long ways towards fixing the unconstitutional funding of Ohio schools as found by the Ohio Supreme Court in the DeRolfe case).

At the time, the SCPR said it had absolutely no chance to go anywhere even if the OGA embraced it as one of John Boccieri's best political friends was none other than Governor Ted Strickland.  So, as for much of Kirk Schuring's legislative career, the effort was "political posturing, pure and simple."

On more mundane legislative matters (almost of the housekeeping variety) a oft used refrain that Schuring's constituents was likely to hear on their requests that he get legislation passed was:  "I'm working on it."

The SCPR has been a victim of Schuring in this regard.  The Report requested that Schuring get the OGA to amend campaign finance law to require local candidates to report the vocation/employer of contributors of more than $100.  Currently, only those deemed to be statewide candidates are required to do so.  The "local" exemption allows big local fundraisers like Canton Mayor William J. Healy, II to go out and get plenty of the $100 plus contributions and the public has no idea - in most instances - who these contributors are.

Well, after an initial flurry of activity and reports of rosy expectations, Schuring produced absolutely nothing.  At the time, yours truly was a constituent of Schuring because he was in the Senate.  Now that he no longer represents, forget it Martin!  Is that it?

The Report is not alone.  In doing the work of the SCPR, yours truly has heard many of Schuring's constituents (both in and out of government) say "well, you know, I asked Senator/Representative Schuring to get - such and such - passed and he tells me:  'I'm working on it.'"

On March 23rd of this year, the Stark County commissioners invited the Stark County legislative delegation into discuss working on ridding the county of "unfunded" mandates that seemed to be those that for the most part made no sense on being part of the Ohio Revised Code.

Representative Schuring took the lead on the request (the list compiled and articulated upon by Stark Court of Common Pleas Judge Tayrn Heath) and supposedly went to work on the list of 22 items).

A couple of weeks ago, The Report checked with county commissioners and Judge Heath and guess how many items on the list were taken care of?  One!

The Report contacted Representative Schuring and guess, just guess what he told yours truly?

You've got it!   He said "I'm working on it."

The SCPR has the list in hand and this is notice to Representative Schuring that someone is watching as to whether or not he gets this list taken care of.

The Stark County Political Report will not give him a pass.

Another person worth watching on this matter is Stark County Commissioner Janet Creighton.

So far in to her term as commissioner (almost six months now), she has impressed The Report that when she asks for things to get done she keeps track of her requests and publicly holds "the doer/doers" accountable.

The question is:  will she do so with Representative Schuring?

Here is a list of bills which Representative Schuring has sponsored in this legislative term.  They are all languishing in committee except for one which seems to be moving, to wit:  getting a license plate design for the Massillon Tigers.  Wow!

1 comment:

BD said...

A couple of years ago a colleague and I testified against a bill Schuring was sponsoring. He also chaired the committee (or was a co-chair). My colleague testified regarding Ohio constitutional issues if the bill became law. When he finished, Schuring made a clever quip as he called the next witness with whom he seemed chummy with something like, "Now we'll hear testimony in English."