On January 9, 2018 resident Kent Blair was appointed by Mayor Kathy Bailey to serve out former Mayor Mark Fitzgerald’s elected council term that expires in 2019. It was the first time since August 14, 2017 that Loveland has a full seven member council.
Eye On Loveland is committed to improving the political discourse by improving the public’s access to public information in a thoughtful, honest and respectful manner. So, let’s examine the facts regarding Mr. Blair’s mayoral appointment to Loveland Council.
On August 1, 2017 Mr. Blair signed a nominating petition declaring his candidacy for Loveland City Council. The nominating petition listed Kathy Bailey as a member of the committee representing the candidate. Typically the candidate seeking the office will gather their nominating signatures in person, as did most of the the other candidates, however the secretary and official spokesperson for the Loveland Community Heartbeat PAC, Haile Rebeccaschild collected Mr. Blair’s nominating signatures and signed as the circulator on his petition. On August 18, 2017 Mr. Blair withdrew his name from the November ballot. File
Council candidate Barry Kuhn at the August 22, 2017 council meeting questioned why Mr. Blair withdrew his candidacy and was concerned that Mr. Blair was asked to “withdraw” so as not to risk the election of the four men, Rob Weisgerber, Ted Phelps, Tim Butler and Neil Oury, who were running as a team. File. The Loveland Community Heartbeat PAC endorsed and campaigned for the slate of four men. Mr. Blair has stated in part, “he would withdraw my own candidacy so that full support could be focused on four candidates for four seats.” File
Was Mr. Kuhn correct? Did someone ask Mr. Blair to withdraw from the race? Was Mr. Blair promised a council appointment with a new council majority led by Kathy Bailey? Does Mr. Blair have an allegiance to the PAC members that signed and supported his nominating petition? Will Mr. Blair govern as he stated when announcing his candidacy “Loveland should stand for all of the residents, not the few who lead it.” Only Council member Kent Blair can answer those questions.
Because Mr. Blair withdrew his name from the ballot, the voters were never given the opportunity to learn about his positions on various issues relating to our city. Eye On Loveland has reached out to Council member Blair with a few questions regarding his viewpoints. File. We look forward to his response and will publish his comments.
Eye On Loveland believes in good governance and embracing new ideas. Therefore, we are advocating that the city charter section 2.03, regarding the vacancy of a council seat be changed. Currently the Mayor, after 30 days of a vacancy makes an appointment for that person to serve out the remaining term. We believe a special election should be held for filling the vacant seat so that the voice of the people will be heard. Something Mr. Blair seems to support with his public comments. The voters will then be afforded the opportunity to learn about their representative’s positions and viewpoints and decide. Transparency is an important part of good governance. That person will then come into office without the shadow of political maneuvering, knowing they have been duly elected by the people they wish to serve.
Please send us an email with your thoughts on this article or anything else you would like to discuss.