Toledo??s mayoral candidates addressed voters in a public forum on Monday at the Toledo-Lucas County Main Library's McMaster Family Center.
WNWO News Director Jim Blue co-moderated the event along with Michael S. Miller, Editor in Chief of the Toledo Free Press. All seven candidates on the ballot - Mayor Mike Bell, Councilman D. Michael Collins, Opal Covey, Alan Cox, Michael Konwinski, Lucas County Auditor Anita Lopez, and Councilman Joe McNamara- participated. Although invited, write-in candidate Donald Gozdowski did not show.
Candidates introduced their platforms prior to fielding questions from the audience. Topics discussed included the future of Toledo??s water system, right to work in Ohio, the size of city government, and strengthening the local economy. Candidates largely refrained from directly attacking the platforms of their opponents.
Republican Opal Covey discussed her plan to boost city revenue and create jobs by building an amusement park.
??Pleasure money is the greatest money,?? said Covey.
Most candidates agreed that education is the cornerstone of a thriving economy.
??You must have confidence in public education and a city must have trust in its government,?? said Collins.
Cox urged the importance of neighborhoods working together with local government.
??We are all involved with this,?? Cox said. He added, ??We each need to do our share.??
Candidates offered varying opinions on the possibility of right to work laws in Ohio. Mayor Bell said it is an issue that changes with different circumstances. Lopez and McNamara both denounced right to work, while Konwinski said he would advocate it.
The mayoral primary on September 10 will narrow the field to just two candidates.