Friday, August 30, 2013

Council members should reimburse city for contributions, candidate Ron Johns says

Toledo council candidate Ron Johns
In July, Toledo City Council voted to give $50,000 to two local charitable (non-profit) organizations. There is no policy guiding such expenditures and other organizations were not given the same opportunity to receive public funds. I'm opposed to government making charitable donations and thought that is the organizations were so "worthy," council should have given their own money - not ours.

I emailed council members to ask about whether they'd spent their own money in addition to ours.

Rob Ludeman explained his vote by saying both organizations were "worthy" but admitted he had not given any of his own money to them because they hadn't asked.

D. Michael Collins, also a candidate for mayor, balked at answering such a personal question, then personally attacked me for having the gall to question him.

Council President Paula Hicks-Hudson claimed the money sent to the charities wasn't a donation - but what was it then?

Now council candidate Ron Johns wants the members of council to reimburse the city for the donations.

Here is his press release (as issued) calling for a "F.A.I.R." resolution:

“The F.A.I.R. Resolution”
Fair Allocation of Internal Revenue (FAIR)

July, 23th of 2013, eleven out of twelve Toledo City council members and the mayor voted to give public monies to two private charities they saw fit of receiving it. The two charities were The African American Legacy fund who was given $20,000 and the University of Toledo Urban Affairs Center who received $30,000 equating to $50,000 of public monies given away to private charities.

The mayor and 11 members of city council obviously saw these charities as doing a large amount of good, however they gave money that was not theirs to give. Our legislators had full intent to fund private organizations that they individually saw as worthy causes off of the taxpayers’ back, even if they didn’t agree with it. For that very reason I am today introducing the F.A.I.R. resolution to allow local politicians to give back the fair amount of money to the community from which they took from.

The FAIR resolution has been designed to point out what is fair and what is not, to illuminate the true role of government and reveal blatant misuse of city funds. The resolution is just a resolution, however if the mayor and eleven members of council who voted in favor of the donations really believe in the tax dollars it gave to private charities then they shouldn’t mind giving it themselves.

The resolution states that “If a vote is not held to cancel the donations before money is transferred, the Mayor and 11 City Council members who voted in favor of the donations shall be required to pay 1/12th of the final total of donations granted in reparations to the City of Toledo, or $4,167 per individual.”

Ron Johns will hold a press conference to discuss the F.A.I.R. resolution by the Civic Plaza fountain in front of 1 Government center Saturday, August 31st, beginning at 1 p.m. and ending at 1:30 p.m.

For more information contact: Ron Johns/419-481-3568

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