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The Suburbanite
  • County commissioners owe taxpayers answers in sheriff's case

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  • In February 2013, only two individuals met the legal qualifications to be considered for appointment as the Stark County sheriff.
    Although Stark County Prosecutor John D. Ferrero publicly expressed his legal opinion that George Maier did not meet the legal qualifications, the Stark County Democratic Party Central Committee appointed George Maier as Stark County sheriff on Feb. 5.
    Knowing that a lawsuit was filed by Sheriff Tim Swanson, and that the Stark County prosecutor gave his legal opinion that Maier was not qualified, the Stark County commissioners still issued George Maier a bond.
    The Stark County commissioners then allowed George Maier to spend taxpayers' money, placing his name on cruisers, signage and stationary knowing full well that a lawsuit was pending and Maier's appointment could ultimately be overturned.
    In November, the Ohio Supreme Court issued a ruling that George Maier did not meet the legal qualifications to be appointed as Stark County sheriff and he was removed from office.
    Last month, the Stark County Democratic Party Central Committee wrongfully appointed George Maier as Stark County sheriff a second time.
    The Stark County commissioners issued George Maier a second bond having full knowledge of the legal opinion of the Stark County Prosecutor's Office and the ruling from the Ohio Supreme Court.
    The actions of the Stark County commissioners raise some serious questions: 1. Why did the commissioners issue any bond to George Maier?
    2. Who did the commissioners seek legal advice from before issuing either bond to George Maier? 3. How do the commissioners' actions expose Stark County to further litigation, liability and expenses?
    I believe the taxpayers are entitled to the answers to these questions.
    PAMELA DENCZAK HENDERHAN,
    PLAIN TOWNSHIP