Personal Agendas Should Not Interfere with City Council Governance

Richard McDaniel, Oberlin resident

To the Editors:

When members of the Oberlin College community and the town community at large go to the polls on Nov. 3 to elect our Oberlin City Council, we should all bear in mind the unnecessary distractions and deep divide in city government caused earlier this year by a dysfunctional group of four Council members. This quartet attacked an outstanding city manager and his administration based solely upon what many, myself included, adjudged to be no more than petty personal agendas and grudges. They denied the community all manner of transparency in their doings by repeatedly refusing to participate in public sessions to discuss their problems. Their individual and collective actions were inappropriate, irresponsible and inexcusable. I regrettably bring up this past history because three members of this disruptive group — Sharon Pearson, Bryan Burgess and Elizabeth Meadows — are running for reelection.

Every voter in Oberlin needs to look closely at the negative effects of their actions on our community and our local government and deny them a return to the Council. We have three other experienced incumbents and a number of new candidates with excellent qualifications running for Council; cast your votes for seven of these. I strongly urge you to not vote for any of the three aforementioned people whose actions earlier this year were so damaging to us all. Send Pearson, Burgess and Meadows a message that bullying, vindictiveness and lack of transparency have no place on Oberlin City Council.

Richard W. McDaniel

Oberlin resident