Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) Report
What Happened Last Year
Wainscott recently sent Amelia "corporate residents" a letter which I believe tops the threat letter of August in the total percentage of lies and deceptions. Mind you not in numbers because it would be hard to beat August 11th, but in percentage!!! In other words you would have to find something besides his name, organization and the plea for funding that was not a threat, result of ignorance or a plain old lie!
The following was going to be my response to Wainscott. I was planning on sending it to the Amelia businesses until I found out from someone in the ABA that it would have been a waste of money because most of the ABA members were already opposed to the tax. But it is still the truth about Wainscott's attempt to threaten these people so read on.
------------------- begin narrative -------------
To whom it may concern:
I don’t know if you are a corporate resident, a partnership, in business for yourself or some other business type so I am not going to say Dear corporate resident. I do know that you are a member of the Amelia Business Association and that is why I am sending you this letter.
You recently received another letter from John Wainscott requesting that you assist him in saving the village. He gives you 5 reasons that you should help him and I would just like to provide you some actual real and truthful information on the subjects with which he is trying to intimidate you. This is a tactic that the Village has used many times. Remember the Ramifications letter of August 11th, 2008 when they threatened us with all the debt. The first threat was the Rumpke debt for $600,000.00 when we owed Rumpke absolutely nothing, zero, 0! There were a lot of other big lies but I think I have made my point! Wainscott is a part of the Administration as a member of the Recreation Commission so I guess he learned the art of intimidation from the best!
He states that “Ohio Revised Codes 703.20 and 703.21, each only a single paragraph, are the only laws which govern village dissolution.” Well, just like all of his other information he failed to do his homework and did not bother to include Ohio Revised Code(ORC) 703.201 Dissolution of village. Perhaps he meant to include only those with single paragraphs because 703.201 if quite a lot bigger.
He continues: “Legislators are unwilling to comment on "what will happen"; instead they are waiting for new laws to come from the lawsuits that are sure to come.”
My only question here is another question. WHAT “legislators” and WHAT “lawsuits”. What a bunch of nonsense. I’ve heard a number of legislators comment on the subject. All you have to do is ask them. How about State Senator Tom Niehaus, Is he a good enough legislator for you Wainscott?
We sent him the following email:
To: Senator Niehaus
Subject: Dissolution of the Village of Amelia
As I am sure you are aware, there is currently scheduled for the May ballot the issue of whether the village governmental structure in the Village of Amelia should be dissolved. While the issue will ultimately be decided by the voters, various statements and claims are already being made in an effort to influence the voters one way or the other. I am writing to you because certain claims have been made regarding what you, as our elected state legislators, have or have not indicated. Thus, instead of relying upon third party hearsay, I figured I’d get confirmation one way or the other directly from each of you.
Specifically, with respect to the prospect of the village being dissolved, it has been claimed that legislators are “unwilling to comment on ‘what will happen’” and “instead they are waiting for new laws to come from the lawsuits that are sure to come.” A few simple questions – (i) have you declared yourselves or otherwise demonstrated an unwillingness to provide any comment on what will happen in the event the village is dissolved; and (ii) have you declared yourselves or otherwise demonstrated that you will simply await for new laws to come about through any lawsuits?
I appreciate it you could confirm or deny that which has been attributed to you. I thank you for you time and your service.
Subject: RE: Dissolution of the Village of Amelia
Date: Sat, 7 Mar 2009 08:34:05 -0500
CC: Candice.Miller@senate.state.oh.us; email@example.com
I can only speak for myself, but I believe Rep. Joe Uecker would agree. The information you have been given is either inaccurate or incomplete.It is unclear what will happen if the village is dissolved. That is being researched by the Attorney General’s Office and State Auditor.
As far as waiting for new laws, we cannot pass legislation that will retroactively impact Amelia. The process being followed in Amelia is governed by current law. Any new laws that may result from the dissolution of Amelia would only affect such actions that are initiated after enactment of such a law. The only way Amelia would be affected by the new law is if the current dissolution process failed, and another attempt was made after any new laws go into effect.
I hope that helps clarify my role in this situation.
Is Wainscott Nostradamus? “Sure to come.” Get real! If he can say all that he ought to be able to predict what happens himself! But let me tell you this. There are precedents for dissolving Villages. Ohio has had dozens over the decades (click for confirmation) , New York has had 20, Vermont 36 and there are more but to make my point it isn’t like Amelia will be the first and nobody knows what to do! I am not implying that there are not going to be lawsuits but I firmly believe that it is overstated! After all the Village has provided me with all the contracts defining the debt and there are to this point only 16. They are having a hard time getting one from Duke and some from some health care companies but so far only 16 so how many “sure to come lawsuits” can we have? I can’t tell you, neither can Wainscott and neither can the Village Administration! The big difference is I’ll tell you I can’t tell you and Wainscott will hand you some ridiculous diatribe to intimidate you!
“The economic climate is too poor for businesses to have to weather a storm of uncertainty while new laws are hashed out in a courtroom. Some unanswered questions are...”
This statement borders on the idiotic.
What uncertainty? We close the doors. First form some sort of committee to manage the dissolution. Laura Abrams, the current Village Solicitor, is a capable professional and should be in charge of this transition. Then we continue to pay our bills from existing levies, make arrangements to sell the $759,400.00 worth of assets (click here for details) the village has to reduce our debt, etc.
What new laws? Can Wainscott really believe that what is going to happen is we wait around for years while who knows who hashes out whatever problems Wainscott has in his brain while nothing else happens! That’s one of the stupidest things I have ever heard!
Besides State Senator Tom Niehaus tells us “As far as waiting for new laws, we cannot pass legislation that will retroactively impact Amelia. The process being followed in Amelia is governed by current law.” Now who is it exactly that is going to believe Wainscott over Senator Niehaus? (just guessing but: Roll call: Ellington yea, Menz yea, Parkers yea, Mitchell yea, Troxell yea, Rosser yea, Campbell yea, Woessner yea………..
The Townships have to be involved and they seem like very competent, reasonable people. It is a matter of negotiations not court fights!
Let’s look at the unanswered questions. Now keep in mind that these are only unanswered to Wainright and others in the Administration who want to intimidate you.
. With Amelia's police officers being terminated as part of the dissolution how would the township's existing police services cope with being stretched even further?
Let’s start with the termination. All the Village employees were given contract extensions for one years pay. This was back in August of 2008 after the first petitions were submitted. They have had a year to find a new job.
The next information is a series of emails that I began back in October of 2008 because of my concern about the police protect as well as other services.
------------------------------ email #3 ---------------------------------
? > -----Original Message-----
> From: firstname.lastname@example.org [mailto:email@example.com] On Behalf
> Of firstname.lastname@example.org
> Sent: Saturday, October 04, 2008 6:03 PM
> To: email@example.com
> Subject: [James Smith, Police Chief] Amelia dissolution
> John Toren sent a message using the contact form at
> October 4th, 2008
> Dear Sir:
> There is a petition being circulated in Amelia to dissolve the Village. If > the village is dissolved the administration has told us that our police > protection will stop immediately. If Amelia is gone the part of the town > South of Main street will just become part of Pierce Township. Would it be > possible for you or someone else in authority tell us what would happen to > our Police protection in the event that Amelia is dissolved? >
> Thank you in advance.
> Kindest Regards
> John M Toren
> Amelia resident
? ------------------------------ email #4 ---------------------------------
? From: firstname.lastname@example.org
> To: email@example.com
> CC: Dwelmer@piercetownship.org
> Subject: RE: [James Smith, Police Chief] Amelia dissolution
> Date: Mon, 6 Oct 2008 14:30:11 -0400
> Mr. Toren, First; I do not want to interfere in any way with the issues in
> the Village of Amelia. Those are issues best left to the Village of Amelia
> and its residents. However, as a professional, we have to be prepared in
> the event there is a dissoloution. As you are probably aware the South side
> of Amelia is in Pierce Township. We have discussed the issue with the
> Clermont County Communications Center and are prepared to have all 9-1-1
> emergency phone calls routed to the Communications Center. There would be
> no delay. In addition Pierce Township officers have to drive through Amelia
> now to reach the Eastern portion of the township. The Pierce Township
> Police Department is driving through Amelia daily on a 24/7 basis. If the
> residents decide to dissolve the Village of Amelia then those residents on
> the South side will still be in Pierce Township. All of our officers have
> street guides for the streets of the current Village of Amelia and we are
> prepared to protect, and respond to, all residents of Pierce Township. The
> Pierce Township Police Department is an award winning department having
> received recognition on both the local and state levels. Should the
> dissolution occur we will strive to continue that service to all of our
> Again, this is not an issue which we will take sides or inject opinion.
> Rather we do have contingency plans to protect all of our residents should
> the issue arise. I trust that issue will be decided by the residents of the
> Village of Amelia.
> > Please forgive the delay in responding to you but I was not in the office
> over the weekend. If I may be of further assistance please do not hesitate
> to email or call.
> Colonel James Smith
> Police Chief
> Pierce Township
------------------------------ email #5 ---------------------------------
From: John Toren [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Monday, October 06, 2008 11:07 PM
To: James Smith
Subject: RE: [James Smith, Police Chief] Amelia dissolution
? To: Colonel James Smith
Thank you for your timely response to my question. I hope that you do not think I am in any way trying to get you involved with this issue. You are absolutely correct when you stated that this is an issue that we Amelians should handle ourselves. Our problem is that we have been threatened by a letter from Mayor Ellington and Administrator Menz that is full of lies and deceptions that if we dissolve Amelia this is what is going to happen to us! One of those deceptions is and I quote "In addition, if our Village is dissolved, it must stop providing services such as street repair, snow plowing, and police protection immediately."
There is no mention of Pierce or Batavia Townships taking over, just that we will be without Police protection. This scared many people and justifiably so. What I am tryimg to do is counter the deception that we will be without "police protection" by finding out what the truth is and letting all the residents know that we will not be without Police protection. I believe your response will answer that question and those who fear that we will be without Police protection will breathe a little easier. For that I thank you for all of us.
I would just like to add that I live on Main Street in Amelia. Both myself and my wife, as well as other Main "Streeters", have often wondered why we never see the Amelia Police on Main street but we see Pierce Township Police cars all the time. Now we know.
Thanks so much for putting some minds to ease.
John M Toren
Amelia Resident for 43 years
------------------------------ email #6 ---------------------------------
RE: [James Smith, Police Chief] Amelia dissolution?
From: James Smith (email@example.com)
Sent: Tue 10/07/08 11:32 AM
To: 'John Toren' (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Cc: 'Dave Elmer' (Dwelmer@piercetownship.org)
Mr. Toren; I do hope I was able to address your concerns. I am not an attorney nor an elected official of either Amelia or Pierce Township. I would think that it is reasonable to assume that if the Village of Amelia is dissolved they would have to stop the services listed as the Village would no longer exist. However, those services would be provided by the respective township. I cannot speak for Batavia Township but Pierce Township will render service to all residents of Pierce Township. As a member of the Pierce Township Administration, and a resident of Pierce Township, I am proud of the services offered by Pierce Township. I wish you, the Village of Amelia, and all the residents of Amelia the very best of luck in resolving the issues before you. Whatever the outcome you will have services and protection. Please feel free to contact me if I may be of further assistance. Sincerely, Colonel James Smith Police Chief Pierce Township
-------------------------------- end emails -----------------------------------
Now I believe Chief Smith is correct. Whatever Pierce Township services are those on the South Side will also receive these services. Just go to the Pierce Township website and you will see that as far as their services are concerned they can outmatch Amelia on every level except perhaps Ellington’s Concert in the Park! If you read the emails then you know that they are ready to go when the Village is dissolved.
As far as the Batavia side, they contract out to the Clermont County Sheriffs Office and the Clermont County Sheriffs have always patrolled the north side of Amelia so anyone who has bothered to find that out realizes that they are not going to stop but continue to protect and serve Amelia since the date of their conception. Whatever services are available to Batavia Township will be available to us as well.
As far as Clermont county is concerned not only do the counties have sheriffs patrolling Amelia already but they have a number of special programs that will still be available if we dissolve the Village. These include a Canine Unit, a Special Response Team, A CBRNE Response Transporter, a Motorcycle Unit, a D.A.R.E Program, a School Safety program, a Dive Team, Special Deputies a Color Guard Unit a Last Chance Program and a Senior Visitation Program. This is one of the best kept secrets in Amelia!
Not only will we be protected and served by the Townships but we are not going to lose our excellent County protection either!
. Will you be asked to change your Main Street address to match those stretches of Ohio Pike adjacent to Amelia?
If Wainscott would have bothered to call the Post Office he could have left this one out. The Post Office has no connection with the Village of Amelia. Everyone will have the same address and zip code as the do now so the answer to his unanswered question is NO!
But I don't expect you to take my word for it either. The following is an excerpt from an email received from State Representative Joseph W. Uecker:
"The United States Post Office is not tied to any municipal location and is governed by Congress. The dissolution of a village has no effect on the municipality (with regards to addresses). To the contrary, more often than not, the post office decides what to call the branch office (and therefore the city of address) regardless of its location. Classic examples would be Miami Township in Clermont County. Miami Township is roughly 30 square miles with over 40,000 residents but all must use with the city address of either Milford or Loveland. If the Village of Amelia were to dissolve, the area currently served by the Amelia post office would still use that name in their address."
. Street lights across Amelia would be turned off along with those along Main Street. How would that affect the crime rate? Are you ready to pay for your own light?
This is typical of the misinformation that the Village produces to intimidate people. The fact is that I can’t tell you the lights are going to be turned off, Wainscott can’t tell you nor can anyone in the Administration tell you! You are perhaps wondering how I know that no one can say? On February 2nd I put in a request for all contracts defining the debt stated in the August 11th threat letter. FEBRUARY 2ND!!! I still have not received the Duke Energy contract(s)!!! They don’t even keep a copy of these documents at the Village office if you can believe that!!! Without a copy of the contract how can anyone tell you what will happen? Just ignore this piece of garbage until I can get a copy of the contract that should define what will take place and when.
. Amelia was incorporated before zoning laws. If the village is dissolved, will existing zones be dissolved or adopted? How long will it take the townships to figure it out?
Below is directly from one of those legislators who Wainscott says are not willing to talk! Is State Representative Joseph W. Uecker a legislator? Good enough for me!
“It does appear that there is little doubt that the law provides for the dissolution, in this instance, under ORC 703.21. It also appears that a dissolution does not affect any accrued liabilities of the village. On the matter of zoning, the underlying zoning of the Townships would come into affect. “
That should be enough to answer Wainscott’s threat. I wonder, does the Village Administration has a class in “Lies and Deceptions 101? They major in this stuff. OR.. Maybe Wainscott wrote the threat letter of August 11th and we been blaming Leroy and Menz for it all this time! Nah!!!
Every ordinance that has benefited your business since 1900 will no longer exist.
I hate to ask you this but how many of you know what ordinances have benefited your business since 1900 or 1950 or 2000 or today? What you should do with this one is ask Wainscott to show you which ordinances have benefited you and let you judge for yourself.
Besides both Townships have ordinances and a lot more businesses than Amelia as well and if anything they would be better than our ordinances because they cover a much greater number of businesses and variety than Amelia has to begin with and therefore should be of greater benefit.
Now I am going to give you an OPINION that is backed by evidence. Your biggest concern should be
If you think for one second that this is a dead issue your wrong. The current administration has big plans for themselves using your money. They want to spend $15,330,000.00(FIFTEEN MILLION THREE HUNDRED THIRTY THOUSAND) on what they call Capital Improvements! This plan is available on the Village website. They need money for this! How are they going to get it.
“The economic climate is too poor for businesses to have to weather a storm of uncertainty while new laws are hashed out in a courtroom. Some unanswered questions are...”
Ellington has endorsed this tax for almost a year, maybe longer! In Cincinnati.Com November 26th it states “Ellington reaffirmed his view that an earnings tax would be the best hope for the village’s financial situation.”
As recently as March 2nd, 2009 in the Village Council meeting Menz said "the earnings tax will help go a long way" when asked if he thought that since the ODOT plans for SR125 improvements were cancelled by ODOT(Ohio Department Of Transportation) if the tax was still needed.
This Capital Improvements plan by the way has a Bypass called Amelia Parkway, that goes around the village and bypasses the downtown area altogether! What would that do to your business? They are so concerned about that they threaten you with Wainscott’s garbage!
Just look at the "net profit" on your income statement and tell me if you want to give the Village part of that so they can hire, oops I meant to say "appoint" more employees like Menz. To say nothing of the impact that you will have in trying to get employees to work for you here in Amelia when they have to pay yet another income tax.!
John M Toren