Monday, July 23, 2012


Until last week, things had been gone swimmingly for Canton Mayor William J. Healy, II.

Going back at least until his re-election in November, 2011, times have been good indeed for Hizzhonor.

But then on March 1, 2012 in his State of the City speech, the mayor probably set himself up for a fall which the SCPR thinks came home to roost this past week. In that speech Healy made the grandiose announcement that from that date forward Canton would be "the Utica Capital!"

Fast forward to July 16, 2012.

Blaring headlines announce that tiny little Louisville at been selected by Chesapeake Energy to be its headquarters in Stark County.

Of course, the mayor denies it as seen in this video, but the SCPR's take is that the reality is that Canton is going to be "second banana" in Stark County as far as tapping into the oil and gas industry and its fracking in the Utica and Marcellus shale deposits is concerned.  Maybe even "third banana" with the announcement months ago that Massillon is going to be the site of a huge beneficiary of oil and gas operations.

Here is Mayor Healy via video responding to the Louisville announcement.

In that video, Healy also expressed uncertainty about whether or not he could get his oil leasing of city lands proposal through Canton City Council.

The Report will come back to that, but for now let's focus on opening of the Canton Obama headquarters.

As far as the SCPR knows, Mayor Healy was supposed to be the headliner speaker at the grand opening of the Canton Obama headquarters on Tuesday, July 17th.  But that did not turn out to be the case.  In fact, he got upstaged (not intentionally) by former 16th District congressman John Boccieri (LINK).

Undoubtedly, in his heart of hearts the mayor didn't like being upstaged, but he and Boccieri are close politically and Boccieri will be an enormous asset as Healy's sister Joyce Healy-Abrams is trying to pull off a political upset of sitting Republican Congressman Bob Gibbs in a new congressional district (the 7th) and so the mayor is demonstrating that he can - when there is a clear benefit in doing so - and will swallow his pride.

Back to the oil drilling lease.

There is news today in area media that Mayor Healy is having to revise his oil and gas leasing proposal to have a realistic chance of getting passage in next week's (July 30th) council session.

Although (in the video) the mayor discounted the effect of the throng of anti-frackers who showed up at council on July 16th and two weeks before that to protest Canton considering drilling on city land whether in the city or outside the city, it appears that these folks were having a impact on council members, and it became apparent to the master nose counter that he had better change the proposal to provide greater specificity and to give council actual approval rights before drilling takes place, if he was not to get slammed next Monday night when the legislation comes up again.

 So for Healy the week of July 16 through 22 was "one tough week!

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