During his campaign, he promised to try to change the perception the suburban communities have of Toledo. He said he would sit down with them and see how they could all work together for the best benefit of the region.
I know he attended the annual meeting of the Lucas County Township Association earlier this year. In fact, one trustee who has been around quite a long time said this was the first time she could ever remember a mayor of Toledo attending, despite the invitations that are always sent.
I'm on the email list for Wood County Commissioner Tim Brown. In his most recent communication, he included the following:
Also this month the Board of Commissioners met with Toledo's new Mayor Mike Bell. The purpose was to simply sit down and introduce ourselves and to establish a rapport for working together in the future. The meeting was significant in that this was the first time since I have been Commissioner that I have ever been invited to sit down with a Mayor of Toledo to discuss regional cooperation. Mayor Bell assembled his staff and invited the President of Toledo Council to join us - and while we did not have a set agenda for this first meeting - we opened the lines of communication and pledged to work more closely as a region on projects of mutual benefit to our citizens. I am confident there will be future meetings and it is my sincere belief that our region will come out of this recession better prepared for the future if we are working together toward common goals and objectives.
While I'm certain I will not always agree with Bell regarding the decisions he makes, I'm so very glad his outreach is happening - and being well received. If he accomplishes nothing else in his time as mayor, he will have done much good for all of us if he succeeds in establishing good relationships with our neighbor communities.