More People respond to Mayor Berger letter about disappointment - Hometownstations.com-WLIO- Lima, OH News Weather Sports

More People respond to Mayor Berger letter about disappointment in the call for a new survey

One of the organizers of Makersfest responded to the letter that Lima Mayor David Berger sent out talking about is his disapproval of  third party survey being sought by county officials rate the performance of the Lima's Building Department, who does building inspections during constructions.   Here is the letter from Doug Arthur and followed by Mayor Berger's original letter.  

Mr. Mayor (David Berger)

Your words have saddened me, and have negatively impacted my credibility as a business consultant in Lima.

I reached out to you last week on April 3rd to share information about our redevelopment efforts at AEDG, and to ask for your advice.  You indicated the conversation with AEDG was halted, and there was nothing that could be done to rebuild the trust and relationship between AEDG and you, because AEDG had misrepresented facts about the City’s and Building Department’s impact on redevelopment.

And then you published in the Lima News on April 6th.  “…it was the work of myself and my administration that resulted in the creation of some of the most aggressive development tools being promoted by my critics including MakerFest, Link Lima…”

Mayor, you and I both know that, while you (City of Lima) were supportive of MakerFest ($1,000 donated out of $189,000 raised in 2017), this community-wide initiative was and continues to be the work of nearly 100 of the employers of the Greater Lima Region under the leadership of Jeff Sprague and AEDG, not the Mayor’s office or any other part of the City.  

And the “Link Lima” workforce development framework and strategy you claim your work created – including such programs as “Home Field Advantage”, the “Link Lima Site Visit Program”, and the “Engineering Executive Lunch Program” – may have received your personal input, but were clearly not created as a result of any of you or your administration’s efforts.  Rather MakerFest and Link Lima exist solely because of the thousands of hours of effort from our region’s wonderful employers under the leadership of AEDG.

When you claim creation of programs that you did not create, you not only misrepresent the truth as you are accusing others of doing, you insult the many businesses who invested significant time and money to make these programs happen.

I must ask you to please immediately publish a retraction – at least regarding creation of MakerFest and Link Lima – that appropriately acknowledges creation of these program by the parties who actually did this important work.  Anything less would be a misrepresentation.

Respectfully,

Doug Arthur

Transform Consulting LLC

April 6, 2018 Media Release

Mayor Calls for Partnership and Collaboration
Lima — April 6, 2018 —

Today, Mayor David Berger released a statement in response to the call by Allen County officials and the Allen Economic Development Group (AEDG) for a third-party consultant’s survey of the Lima / Allen County Building Department:

“For over a year now, my office has endured divisive political attacks waged against the City’s performance across multiple platforms by county officials and the Allen Economic Development Group (AEDG). Quite frankly, this barrage of accusations are from some of the same voices we heard during the campaign season, and it is time that we roll the credits on this political theater.

To suggest that the City is in the way of economic development is both insulting and untrue. In fact, it was the work of myself and my administration that resulted in the creation of some of the most aggressive development tools being promoted by my critics including Makerfest, Link Lima, Husky’s most recent $2.3M acquisition, and the launch of the Allen County Land Bank. In addition, the City’s work is fostering Rhodes $20M investment in the Downtown, the National Bank Building’s $17M renovation, the Hall ofJustice’s $2M renovation, a new $2M Lima Stadium Park, and the new $13M Dominion corporate campus. In fact, according to Lima Building and Construction Trades

Council, an estimated $275 Million Dollars were invested in the Lima community in 2017. These investments included capital projects at Husky and PCS, and a new perfume building at Procter & Gamble— all projects that were professionally handled by the Lima / Allen County Building Department with hands on, direct and positive customer service. Our energies and efforts should be focused on promoting the economic opportunities and welfare of working families in Lima / Allen County.

Creating economic opportunities for local residents in Lima and Allen County demands our attention and our focus. When low-wage workers get a raise, they spend it on basic services or necessities. This creates a positive ripple effect that results in the demand for goods and services, benefits business owners, creates opportunities for residents, provides economic security for families, and creates profit and investment opportunities for developers.

Yet our County Commissioners and regionally focused economic development group would rather spend taxpayer dollars on consultants to promote political propaganda? They would rather cut funding for public transportation and leave countless Allen County residents disconnected from opportunity? Once again, our county officials have missed the bus.

The future of our city depends on our leadership. I will no longer engage in these emotionally charged conversations about the Lima 7 Allen County Building Department and will instead continue to focus on the real lives of real people. We will cease spending staff time on mollification of the prejudices ofMr. Noonan and Mr. Sprague. Doing so impedes economic development and progress for the entire region.

I want to ensure the taxpayers of Lima that, unlike Commissioner Noonan, I am unwilling to throw away taxpayer money in an attempt to continue to sow discontent between governmental entities.  And I will say to the critics and dissenting voices - The election is over. The community has spoken. Let's move on.

We need a different conversation, one that encourages partnership and collaboration, while searching for practical solutions. We need to talk to each other, to learn from each other, to focus on how we surmount the significant challenges we continue to face as a region. Our improving economy will only be harmed by this ongoing inflamed deception by the Commissioners and AEDG."

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