By Wayne Allen
Ed Fitzgerald, democratic candidate for Ohio governor was in Portsmouth late last week to meet with local supporters. While in town, Fitzgerald spoke exclusively with the Daily Times.
“I’ve been in all 88 counties in the state and some of them more than once including Scioto,” Fitzgerald said.
When asked about the role of southern Ohio in the future, Fitzgerald said, “Scioto used to have a robust local economy, it’s doing OK now. If you look at what’s happened with Portsmouth, you had a city that was at 60,000 people at one point and you have local industries gradually over time going away, which is why you’re down in population.”
Fitzgerald said one of his criticisms about Gov. John Kasich is, “he’s been putting a lot of money into economic development, but you’re not seeing it in small town Ohio. You see a lot in Columbus, Cleveland and you some in other big cities.”
Fitzgerald said he was a mayor in a city of 50,000 people, and he had an emphasis on what he calls Main Street Businesses.
“There is a little bit of a renaissance going on in a lot of towns including here in Portsmouth. If you ask most of those folks if they have gotten any help from the state, they’ll say no,” Fitzgerald said. “You don’t always have to go for the giant corporations that employs thousands of people. If a business employs ten people and they want to go to 15 and the state can help, that makes since. I don’t think the governor gets that, I don’t think he understand that.”
Fitzgerald said that issue would be a big priority for his administration if elected, and his campaign is going to intensify its efforts to visit small communities around the state.
While in Portsmouth, Fitzgerald also toured the Scioto County Courthouse and heard about some issues the county is dealing with.
For more information about the Ed Fitzgerald campaign visit www.edfitzgeraldforohio.com.
Wayne Allen can be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 228 or on Twitter @WayneallenPDT.