Wednesday, July 17, 2013


It would be a mistake to leave a Canton City Council meeting before the final bell.

The very last item on the meeting agenda before adjournment is "Miscellaneous Business."

The SCPR has learned over the years that some of the most riveting stuff occurs during this part of the Canton City Council agenda.

It is the opportunity for council members and members of the Healy administration to pipe in with just about anything that they want to get out into the public.

Council President Allen Schulman is a regular participant in "Miscellaneous Business" and is known to use this aspect of the meeting for going after various national, state and Stark County political personages on "issues of the day."

Monday night's meeting was Schulman at his finest insofar as the SCPR is concerned.

Earlier in the day, The Report published a blog (LINK) showing how disingenuous the Ohio General Assembly (OGA) can be and indeed is on the matter of K-12 public school funding.

The main point of the blog was working through the numbers from $45.4 million newspaper headlines in casino profits (per half) that the OGA has earmarked for local school districts and how by the time one gets to how much it means per student the amount gets whittled down to $20.

Compared to the cost of educating a student in Stark County's schools (ranging from a high of $11,631 in Massillon to $7,426 in Tuslaw), the $20 is "one big - though cruel -laugh" at the expense of public education.

But the legislators always focus on the $45.4 million like they really have done something for the financing of public education.

A particularly reprehensible part of the actions of the Republican super-majority (meaning governor veto proof) in passing the 2014-2015 biennium budget bill (including Stark County Republicans Scott Oelslager, Kirk Schuring and Christina Hagan was to make it more difficult for local school districts and other local government units to get new property tax issues passed.

Schulman picked up on the essential points of the blog plus other "screwings" of local government by our state government in his quintessential and unique style on Monday past.

He also got on the voting public for its apathy in just sitting by and dutifully accepting whatever the Legislature dishes out to the public's own detriment.

And he fired a shot across the bow to the local print media for largely ignoring what transpires at the Statehouse that damages the ability of local governments to responsibly and effectively serve their cities, villages, townships and local school districts.

For the SCPR's money, Canton City Council President Allen Schulman is a model of passion and political energy that other Stark County officials would do well to emulate.

Many, if not most Stark County elected officials, are like eating vanilla ice cream.

Few local officials have the spark and fire of Democrat Schulman.

Another Stark County political figure who has loads of "fire in the belly" is Republican Stark County commissioner Janet Creighton.

With a few other exceptions, in the view of the SCPR, Stark County officialdom is a pretty bland lot which explains in large part what local government is getting dumped on by the folks in the Washington and Columbus beltways.

Here is Schulman at his finest!

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