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County vs City

Hollie Newton • Jun 17, 2014 at 12:33 PM

Are three county commissioners enough representation for the whole county?


The county is an example of what can happen when the citizens have minimum representation. The county can be run by two commissioners because they are counted as a majority. The third commissioner is just on standby to break a tie when the two commissioners cannot agree to pass legislation. Another problem could present itself when the tie breaker commissioner has to abstain making the passage of legislation impossible to accomplish. When there are plenty of elected officials, the majority of commissioners increases allowing the rest of the commissioners to work around the bickering commissioners so something can still be accomplished. 


The water contract between Sandusky and the county is a prime example of how minimum representation can cause problems when two of the commissioners are bickering. One county commissioner suggested the city wholesale the water to the county. I think the county could be more realistic about the fairness of the negotiations. If the city wholesales the water to the county, the taxpayers will be making up for the lost revenue. It would be impossible for the City of Sandusky to take such a hit in lost revenue. Failure to live up to the contract is why the county is being sued, so what makes the county think it can make the wholesale deal work? I don’t think the city would like to take another chance at a repeated occurrence with the idea of losing even more money in the process.


As a juror, years ago, on trial day, I sat in the courtroom waiting for two attorneys who decided they were going to get serious about negotiations to keep the case from going to trial preventing more costs. The lawsuit was settled that day but not without wasting most of the jurors’ time hanging around waiting for the two lawyers to settle a lawsuit. What will happen with the water lawsuit is anyone’s guess, but there is still hope for a last minute settlement before the case goes to trial.


I wonder how the water lawsuit expenses will be paid. Will the insurance cover any of the expenses? Either way, the entities and taxpayers are in for a lot of financial pain because one party failed to live up to the contract. I am hoping the city does not allow the county to make another new deal but to enforce what the contract states, and for the county to pay the water bill difference from all these years the county did not comply. 


The county is getting a break on the water because of the agreement it did make with the city. So far, the county is the only one making out on the deal and Sandusky is left receiving nothing in return. How is it possible for the city to do business with the county ever again? I feel the trust of doing business with the county has been broken and it will be difficult to ever trust the county again.

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