Deserves a ‘D’ for Democracy

Dear Editor,
Addison Township appointed a Trustee without reviewing any of the candidate’s qualifications, accomplishments and what their ideas were of how they would serve, with the public. (See video at:
The Addison Township board met on July 19 and on the agenda was the item of Appointment of a Township Trustee, Partial Term. (Note: no public hearing has ever been held on this and no public hearing was placed on this agenda item.) Instead of reviewing the three resumes received with the public then having a public hearing (that should have been part of the agenda item) and then the board members could discuss, Supervisor Bruce Pearson stated, in so many words, at the end of the meeting he had made the decision. (@44:45 in the video)
Trustee Brakefield interrupted Supervisor Pearson (@ 5:33 in the video) as he began to introduce (that begun @5:20 in the video) the agenda item details, a violation of Roberts Rules of meeting conduct by making a motion to appoint Jacob Newby, one of the people who have shared their interest and resumes in serving as Trustee. Whereby attempting to forbid everyone else on the board to entertain anyone else willing to serve and railroading this person into the role.
Many people in the audience and two of the board members objected to this action as they just received Mr. Newby’s resume that afternoon, but the Supervisor allowed it to be seconded and shut down any discussion about the matter. Other trustees Fisher and Geibel objected to making a motion to appoint before review but Mr. Pearson pushed saying ‘there is a motion and a support’. He also would not Table the motion, as was asked/suggested by a member of the audience and proper per Roberts Rules, to allow the public and the board members to hear the qualifications and presentations of the other candidates willing to serve. The supervisor later admitted, in so many words, to select and bring in Mr. Newby as he was a former board trustee and not even consider the other two candidates. Not one of the other candidates had a chance to even present themselves to the board. The other candidates were not contacted by any of the board prior to the meeting to review their interest and the position. Most likely they believed, as we did, that they would be at the next board meeting to present themselves to the board for questions. So, just how did this important decision get to be decided? It was made by Supervisor Pearson not by the board and certainly not in the democratic American way.
What is also eye opening is that Mr. Newby ran for treasurer of Addison Township and did not garner enough votes in the primary to even win a trustee’s position. Two other candidates that failed to win trustee in the primary would have beat him.
At the public forum portion of the meeting the public let the board know their dissatisfaction of the poor and untrustworthy Trustee appointment process that was just performed. Many had been there to hear the trustee candidates speak and to support the ones they believed would be a great trustee. They voiced that the way the board nominated and approved the appointment was being unfair, appalling to the candidates and the community that were there to support certain candidates by refusing to allow discussion, candidate presentations and a hearing of the public on the matter, An absolute travesty to happen in our community. We need our government to be by the people and for the people. Not one person deciding.
Many kind regards,
Ron Renaud

(Editor’s Note: Mr. Renaud was one of three residents to volunteer for the trustee seat.)

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