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Published: Thursday, 11/3/2005

Trip to City Hall turns into real-life civics lesson

BY VANESSA WINANS
BLADE STAFF WRITER

Amanda Mary Scott Rice went to Government Center to pay a bill. She left as a write-in candidate for City Council.

I got off on the wrong floor, and went to see my friend, she explains, seated in her apartment s tidy living room. The next thing you know, I was signing up for City Council.

Ms. Rice is the only registered write-in candidate for one of council s six at-large seats. She faces stiff odds: no write-in candidate has ever won a council seat, according to the council clerk.

She doesn t have campaign signs her own home s front yard contains no signs endorsing any candidates and she s not out shaking hands or going door to door for votes. She has no pet projects or issues. Her run for council seems to be more about figuring out what to do with the rest of her life than about politics.

I m at the age where you re seeing what you re going to do, the 54-year-old Toledo native says. You re thinking about the old life.

The age barrier crossed my mind, she continues. What is you doing for your city, what is you doing for what s around you? I m at the age where I understand commitment. Maybe I can make a difference with things.

She says the biggest issue facing the city right now is the people themselves. People should follow through on what they need to do. I hate when people don t want to give a dollar, or $1.50, for the roads or the schools.

As for what she would tackle first if she were elected, myself, I guess, to keep myself motivated.

Indeed, motivation is a key part of the council s job, she says.

The role of City Council is a high-protein job. You know, so you have energy.

You have to have achievement thoughts, she adds, her enthusiasm growing. We have to keep thumbs up in the air instead of thumbs down.

High fuel costs and environmental issues do concern her.

They say God is separated from politics, she says. Well, He s not separated from your life. He ll tell us, Ain t no more gas!

So why vote for her?

I think I can make a difference, she says. I can open up the space that was empty to fulfill it for something.

Contact Vanessa Winans at:vwinans@theblade.com or 419-724-6168.



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