Repository commenter Lucy Litten had it right!
In due course after the story broke, yours truly's Stark County Political Report would be all over Mayor Healy's try to show Canton's finest that in reality he is the Finest-in-Chief.
Other than underestimating his staying power, The Report figured out long ago what an insufferable egotist he is.
The inability of Tom Bernabei (as service director/chief-of-state; now Stark County commissioner) and Tom Nesbitt to work with the mayor was a clear signal that Healy was well on his way to being a "my-way-or-the-highway-sort-of-guy" as justified and vouched for by his being credentialed (i.e. his MBA from the New York Stern School of Business) as having extraordinary qualities.
Healy's Tuesday "cop-on-the-beat" takeover shows that he thinks Police Chief Bruce Lawver is mere window dressing.
If the mayor finds a need to show his "big-man-on-campus" side, Lawver is no more the "real" chief of police in Healy's mind than:
- Tom Ream was the "real" safety director,
- NOTE 1: While Healy tried to make it appear that it was all Ream's doing to change the rules of governance of the Canton-Stark County Crime Lab so as to put in his personal friend and political pal and former Stark County chief deputy Rick Perez in as crime lab boss, the plan in reality could not have happened without the mayor's participation and blessing.
- The SCPR hears that Ream supporters are furious at the way Healy "threw Ream under the bus" when the political scheme broke into the news and are saying so to anyone who will listen.
- Yours truly for one doesn't want to hear it. Ream was richly rewarded by the mayor with an healthy increase in salary (from $70, 000 to $84,000 [a whopping 20%] over the space of time he has served as safety director. He had to know what he was getting into.
- NOTE 2: A story just broke about how Ream as an administration point man welched on behalf of the city (and, the SCPR believes, at the instruction of Mayor Healy) with some eight new Canton policemen over their rate of pay. The city is proposing a settlement at $5,000 each.
- Councilperson Mary Cirelli writes: I think Thomas Ream should be held accountable for his ACTIONS !!!
- So does the SCPR, however, it is shortsighted to think that William J. Healy, II was not part and parcel of the decision to not pay according to the base agreement.
- Warren Price is the "real" chief-of-staff, service director, annex director and safety chief, or
- NOTE: The Report has been told by a reliable source that Price has been sporadically looking for alternative employment over the course of his Healy administration time.
- Fonda Williams is the "real" economic development director.
- NOTE: It appears that Williams has had the mayor pull the rug out from underneath him when it became obvious that necessary councilmanic support was missing.
And, on and on and on and on goes the lists of those who serve at Healy's beck and call in that a condition of serving in a Healy administration is that each and every one of them has to implicitly agree to step aside while the Wizard of the 8th floor takes charge.
As undoubtedly most SCPR readers know from The Rep's Matt Rink's coverage (Mayor stops driver, alleges stop sign violation, July 3, 2013) of an incident which occurred on Tuesday, July 2nd; Mayor Healy has landed himself in some deep, deep doo-doo for about the umpteenth time since he became the city's chief executive on January 1, 2008.
Rink in the article neatly summarizes the scrutiny that the mayor will now undergo at the hand of Chief of Police Bruce Lawver and Law Director Joe Martuccio:
- His use of a city-owned vehicle to do his police work,
- His use of an police-esque emergency light to make the stop,
- His presentation as to whether or not he represented himself or with one having police powers, and
- Whether or not, in so acting, he placed the apprehended one, himself, and onlookers at risk in terms of personal safety.
A major aspect of his campaign in which he successfully unseated Republican Mayor Janet Creighton in the November, 2007 election was his much ballyhooed "Zero-Tolerance-of-Crime" oft repeated campaign cliche-esque mantra.
After his 2011 reelection, one hasn't heard that phrase grace his lips inasmuch as it is obvious to one and all (unless one has been living under a rock somewhere) that Canton is a long, long way from achieving anything near zero tolerance of crime.
Being the politically slippery guy he is, he now says Canton is in "a post-zero-tolerance mode," whatever that means.
Post-zero-tolerance mode means whatever Healy says it means a la that famous Clintonian line: "It depends on what is, is."
The SCPR has often written that Mayor Healy is the envy of a 9-lived cat because over his five and one-half years as mayor he has escaped political life threatening incident after incident after incident because he is more difficult to grasp than eel.
He is Stark County's version of former president Bill Clinton in the sense that he appears - on a number of occasions - to have "politically" killed himself, only to come springing back to life.
One should ask: Bill Clinton - in the sense of his escape artist qualities - William J. Healy, II's political godfather?
The SCPR did the very first media publication (one year into his first term as mayor) suggesting that he and his administration was on a sinking ship. (LINK: SCPR blog of January 26, 2009)
But writing such was a clear demonstration of not understanding Healy's extraordinary Houdini-esque skills.
The way he is going, if he cannot find a bigger and better political landing place (e.g. the U.S. Congress or a statewide political office), the odds are that Healy is going to be around for a third term as mayor and perhaps beyond.
There is no doubt as Ms. Litten has pointed out, Hizzhonor does, by most people's standards, on becoming the de facto police chief of Canton look foolish at the worst, inappropriate at the least and tinged with a healthy dose of grandstanding (perhaps learned from Stark County Court of Common Pleas judge Frank Forchione [a la Craig Conley's assertion in the Studer case]).
Of course, he has appeared to be an inappropriate, foolish and a quintessential grandstander frequently in his five and one-half years.
What might actually do him in is if one of his scrapes escalates into being illegal.
So far he has skillfully negotiated those waters and has avoided any such finding.
Nobody in officialdom will say for sure, but there appears to have been several times from among his multiple scrapes that there has been a look-see as to whether or not he slipped over the line and did something illegal.
While some folks might get a chuckle out of Healy's antics, that Canton voters keep this man in office makes Canton look every bit a foolish city indeed!
The Healy ongoing distraction is serious business for Canton because as the SCPR sees it his foolishness makes it very unlikely that Canton is going to recover its former status as being a great Ohio city.
If Healy is an embarrassment to Cantonians, who is to blame for that?