By Frank Lewis
Several Democratic candidates gathered for a meet and greet session at the Franklin Furnace Community Center Saturday. The event was hosted by 90th District House of Representatives candidate Tom Davis.
“The reason I’m bringing the candidates together in Franklin Furnace is I want them to see that (State Rep. Terry) Johnson ran on a ticket of promising jobs for southern Ohio,” Davis said. “And truly since we’ve seen the takeover of the Statehouse we have seen nothing but job losses in southern Ohio. We have seen the loss with the correctional facility here in Franklin Furnace. It was very unfortunate that we didn’t get the extra ovens with Sun Coke that went to South Shore, Kentucky. We’ve seen cuts in education through the various school districts out there that are battling to keep their doors open. We have seen the privatization of the cooks at the state prison system and the guards removed from the tower.”
One of those attending the meet and greet was Democratic candidate for Scioto County Commissioner, Don Rachford.
“I really feel strong with the campaign. We ended up having a mailing and I’ve got some really really nice responses out of that,” Rachford said. “The people have asked me quite a few questions. The main thing they like to ask is ‘what are you planning on doing when you first get in there?’”
Rachford said the first thing he would like to accomplish is to get all of the elected officials together, bring in the public, including all of the voters and find out what their real concerns are.
“With economic development is a good word to put out there, but we have to act upon that, just not talk about it, but find out really what the people of Scioto County expect out of the elected officials,” Rachford said. “That’s what we have to do.”
Also on hand was one of Rachford’s opponents in the May primary, Gary Rae Mullins.
“I’ve been in radio and TV for decades,” Mullins said. “I think I can help freshen the image of Scioto County as far as creating jobs, bringing industry, small industry. We have a lot of resources here. We have the college (Shawnee State University), and we’re shipping these resources out of the county for some reason. We need to concentrate on smaller industries. We don’t necessarily need a huge industry. We need several smaller industries, something that fits the bill.”
Mullins said he is concerned about the younger citizens leaving the area.
“There’s a big vacuum, and I would just like to create a new image,” Mullins said. “Bring confidence back to our local government.”
Frank Lewis can be reached at 740-353-3101, Ext. 252, or on Twitter @FrankLewispdt.