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Published: Tuesday, 10/28/2008

Finkbeiner vetoes resolution to have officials quizzed

BY IGNAZIO MESSINA
BLADE STAFF WRITER

Mayor Carty Finkbeiner has vetoed a Toledo City Council resolution approved 7-5 last week that would have required any person the mayor wants to sit on policy-making boards or commissions to appear before council and answer questions during a public meeting.

"My main interest in this matter is that we fill all of our boards and commissions with a diverse and well-qualified pool of applicants, without political interference," the mayor wrote to council on Friday.

"This is not always an easy task, and finding well-qualified applicants is difficult enough without placing another obstacle in front of their willingness to serve."

Reappointments also would have had to produce attendance records from their previous term.

The resolution was suggested by Councilman D. Michael Collins, who was joined in supporting it by councilmen Mike Craig, Tom Waniewski, Lindsay Webb, Phillip Copeland, Joseph McNamara, and Frank Szollosi.

Voting against were Mark Sobczak, Michael Ashford, Wilma Brown, George Sarantou, and Betty Shultz.

It would take nine votes to overturn Mr. Finkbeiner's veto.

"I read his response and I find it rather self-serving on his part," Mr. Collins said. "Why would he be making excuses for people who have yet to be appointed or recommended for appointment?

"And if the crux of the issue is that [if] it is too burdensome to come before council, why is it not too burdensome for clergy to come into council [for the convocation] and people to come sing the National Anthem?" he asked.

The Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority is among the boards to which the mayor appoints members.

Council voted 9-2 last month to approve Mayor Finkbeiner's appointment of Jerry Chabler, 73, of Sylvania, to the port board. Mr. Ashford and Mr. Waniewski voted no.

Mr. Chabler did attend the council meeting, which is unusual for a mayoral appointee.



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