Norton councilman responds to letter writer
To the editor:
On Oct. 4, a letter appeared [in the West Side Leader] from Claude Collins, former city administrator for the city of Norton. I found Mr. Collins’ letter angry and rambling. There is no love lost between Mr. Collins and myself; it is a well-known fact that we have never seen eye to eye. I am offended that Mr. Collins refers to Issue 45 as an “ignorant personal vendetta.” Unfortunately, having known Mr. Collins for years, I’ve come to expect nothing more from him. Being a former Barberton police chief, it’s obvious where his loyalties lie. Interestingly enough, our current city administrator has publicly admitted that he, personally, is “biased toward the Norton Police Department.” Could this phenomenon be contagious?
I have never tried to hide the fact that I have actively pursued cost-saving methods for the city of Norton. Nor am I denying my support of Issue 45. It remains a fact that I am the only Council member who has proposed any cost-saving alternatives of any kind. Be advised that if we don’t take advantages of the cost savings involved with contracting with the Summit County Sheriff’s Office, we should expect higher taxes in our future. I am not going to repeatedly reiterate the savings involved in Issue 45; the PAC will speak to those details. Anyone who wants the real numbers knows how to contact me. Likewise, any Norton police officer who wishes to contact me, anonymously, should feel free to do so. I’d be happy to talk with anyone, anytime and anywhere. I have all the numbers and details that I am prepared to share with you. I have nothing to hide, and contrary to Mr. Collins’ comments, my only agenda is stabilizing the financial status of our city. It’s your future, too. Do you really think you’re getting the entire story?
It is interesting that Mr. Collins states we are “forcing the voters to discuss and vote on the Issue.” I’m sure that is the purpose of a healthy, democratic society. The financial future of our city depends on a “yes” vote on Issue 45.
Mr. Collins assertion that this is my “campaign contrivance” is ridiculous. Another councilman contacted the Summit County Sheriff’s Office complaining about the Norton Police Department prior to my inquiry. Seven hundred and fifty-four signatures on the circulated petitions leading to Issue 45 certainly indicate the residents want to vote. Mr. Collins is merely trying to smear my campaign, which is what I expected. The only problem with his logic is that I am proud to have brought this alternative money-saving issue to the people.
Based on Mr. Collins tirade and rambling dissertation, his time would be better spent learning to control his temper. May I suggest anger management counseling?
Tom Jones, Ward 1 Norton City