Sunday, January 07, 2007

Council President, an Opportunity Lost

At the City Council meeting Tuesday, January 2, a motion to elect a new Council president was made. A majority yes vote was required to pass the motion so the floor could be opened to receive nominations. It was disappointing to have a Council of 8 Democrats and 4 Republicans kill the motion as a majority yes vote was not achieved. The reason given by Frank Szollosi was that the Democrats didn’t have their “act” together and therefore had no business electing a president. He further explained there was a previous meeting with some of the Democratic Council members to discuss the position but a consensus was not reached. It was a choice between Frank and Wilma Brown. I was so hopeful Wilma would be selected. She has had a career spanning over 40 years which has required diplomacy, negotiation and dialogue. If there is anything we need right now, it is diplomacy, negotiation and dialogue between the split Democrats, the Administration and the Republican representatives. By killing the motion, there was no chance of electing a Democrat as president of Council and it indicates a belief by some of the Democrats that a Republican president would be better than a qualified Democrat, Wilma Brown. I would be concerned with Frank at the helm; even further division would yield conflict between the Administration and Council which would hinder progress in Toledo. Frank would be in a no win position as President as any action he would take would be deemed anti Administration or buckling to the Administration. At this juncture, we need at least a fighting chance of having an empowered Council. Frank has a future in this city, but this is not the time for him to lead as Council president and I doubt he really believes he would have any success in working with the Administration.

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