To the editor:
Voting in favor of Issue 14 for an independent law director and requiring residency is a common-sense amendment to Green’s City Charter.
This charter amendment was devised by attorneys, and sponsored by, Citizens for Responsible Green Government, as well as more than 1,000 residents who signed the petition. This initiative was modeled after the city of Stow’s Charter.
Green would join Stow, Tallmadge, Barberton, Westlake, Wilmington, Shelby, Mansfield, Findlay, Zanesville and Salem which all elect their law directors. Even the State of Ohio elects a law director, our Attorney General. Currently, Green’s law director is appointed by the mayor, making the position beholden to a politician, not the residents.
There are at least 390 lawyers registered with the Ohio Supreme Court whose licenses are included in the zip codes within Green. Although not all live in Green, there is a significant qualified pool of lawyers in Green to run for office. And that figure doesn’t include the attorneys who live in our community but list only their work addresses. In every community larger or smaller than Green, someone steps up to run for law director. Requiring residency allows the law director to have a pulse on the community.
Issue 14 is a long time coming. Efforts have been made in the past to change the city charter, but it never happened because the Charter Commission members are appointed by the mayor. The city’s history has demonstrated that the appointed law directors have been a mayor’s personal attorney, rarely opposing anything that any mayor has wanted to do. If residents disagreed, the law directors always sided with their boss, the mayor.
Citizens For Responsible Green Government,
3635 Avanti Lane, Uniontown