Community Opinion

NAMI director urges ‘yes’ vote on ADAMHS levy

I am writing today to encourage you to vote yes on the Wood County Alcohol, Drug Addiction, and Mental Health Services (ADAMHS) Board 1 mill Replacement Levy on Tuesday, November 6th if you haven’t done so already. This is not a new tax, it would bring the old tax up to current value. The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) of Wood County receives a majority of its funding from the ADAMHS Board to provide support, education, and advocacy for individuals affected by mental illness. One in five people are living with the signs and symptoms of a mental illness. Of these one in five, there are many more family members, friends, and colleagues affected by their loved ones condition. NAMI is able to provide support and education for all of the above mentioned. NAMI Wood County provides twice yearly free classes for family members and individuals living with mental health conditions through the support from ADAMHS. These classes and ongoing support groups are invaluable to those that utilize them. Many times, people attend a program and announce that they’ve not shared their story elsewhere. NAMI can provide that safe space for people to share, be heard, and feel supported by peers. Among the many peer programs that NAMI provides, there are a great deal of community education programs offered due to Levy support.  Mental Health First Aid teaches individuals how to provide assistance and access help for a person in a mental health crisis. Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) trainings are coordinated by NAMI as well. This community program offered twice yearly provides law enforcement officers information in working with individuals in a mental health crisis. CIT companion courses hosted by NAMI include: Fire and Rescue Workers, Dispatchers, Behavioral Health Clinicians, Advanced Trainings, and Resiliency Trainings. The evidence based prevention and recovery programs that NAMI Wood County provides are national programs with statistics that have shown reductions in recidivism rates in both jails and hospitals. By supporting the ADAMHS Board Levy, you are making a difference in the lives of people affected by mental illness and the Wood County community. Jessica Schmitt Executive Director NAMI Wood County

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League of Women Voters urges support for mental health services levy

To the Editor: The Mental Health Committee of the League of Women Voters of Bowling Green urges a positive vote for the Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Metal Health Services (ADAMHS) Board’s levy. This 1.0 mill, 10-year replacement levy will provide funding forjust over one-third of the costs of the county’s mental health and addiction services, about $3,263,000 a year. A replacement levy is not a new tax. It keeps the millage the same, but uses current property values.  The levy will cost $35.00 per $100,000 home valuation. This is about an $8.60 increase yearly to the home owner. The ADAMHS Board is comprised of eighteen volunteer Wood County community members, bringing with them a variety of expertise and experience. The Board operations are conducted by the Executive Director and six staff. The Board assesses the county’s mental health and substance abuse problems and plans for cost effective services to address them. It then contracts with certified community agencies to provide programs and therapiesand monitors and evaluates these services. It raises funds through levies and grants. Mental health and addiction services and programs include treatment and support for recovery, crisis response and intervention services, the latter working closely with law enforcement. The ADAMHS Board funds agencies’ nationallyrecognized community education and prevention programs, including those aimed at the rising opiate epidemic and the increasing number of suicides in Wood County. Services reach all ages of Wood County residents. Some agencies receiving program funding include: The Children’s Resource Center, Harbor Wood Co., Unison Health, the Zepf Center, Lutheran Social Services, and A Renewed Mind. The ADAMHS Board also contracts with three hospitals that provide inpatient psychiatric services. This levy is a good investment in the lives of people dealing with difficult problems. Helping them and their families helpsmake stronger communities for all of us. ​​Lee Hakel, President, League of Women Voters of Bowling Green ​​Charlotte Scherer, Chair, Mental Health Committee

Gary Jones: My biggest concern is that Mr. Latta does not engage with his constituency

An Informed Voter’s Choice I am a Democrat who doesn’t mean to bash Bob Latta.  I simply want to draw comparison’s between the two candidates.  My biggest concern is that Mr. Latta does not engage with his constituency.  I talked to a Northwest Ohio woman visiting her children in Florida who was angry because she had gone to a Latta Town Hall and he did not show up to take questions.  In a democracy, that is not right.  Our government is of the people, by the people, and for the people.  It is a citizen’s right to hear and to question a candidate in order to have informed opinions.  Michael Galbraith has been speaking all over the 5th district that spans from the Indiana line to beyond Oak Harbor and the Michigan line to beyond Fort Recovery. He is and has been speaking and taking questions and challenges all over this gerrymandered district to favor Latta.  Galbraith will talk to anyone who wants to listen or question him.  Since meeting with constituents is a main concern for me, the better choice is clear. Secondly, I am so tired of the gridlock in congress whose 15% approval rating is so dismal.  Galbraith’s position is to find common ground and compromise with the Republicans and Independents in order to pass much needed legislation that currently sets in gridlock.  Our congressman simply votes with President.  I just wish he would meet with people to explain his position on issues and his vision for solving the gridlock and the legislation on which he would seek compromise. I have listened to Michael Galbraith’s position on our natural resources especially our rivers, the Great Lakes, and our aquifers.  I have not had the chance to listen to or to question Latta’s positions. Is Mr. Latta’s position on the Affordable Care Act to do away with what remains of ACA? The Congressional Budget Office had estimated that repeal of the Affordable Care Act would have left 23 million more Americans uninsured.  If congress is concerned about healthcare, insuring people with pre-existing conditions, and cost then they must find an alternative that both sides can support.   What is Latta’s alternative? These are the issues that concern me in the 5th district. Compare the two candidates’ positions on congressional gridlock, access to our representatives, bipartisanship, 5th district natural resources, and healthcare.  An informed voter’s choice is clear. Gary Jones Bowling Green

David Kuebeck urges voters to retain Matthew Oestreich as Wood County Auditor

I write today to encourage voters to retain Matthew Oestreich as Wood County Auditor. It has been my pleasure to know and work with Matt for nine years; we were colleagues in the Auditor’s Office for much of that time. In my professional relationship with Matt, I have come to see a like-minded fiscal conservative and a dedicated public servant for whom the taxpayer is foremost in all his actions. Matt is truly an innovator – firsthand I have seen Matt conceptualize and implement many improvements to the Auditor’s Office including paperless purchase orders, paying vendors via direct deposit rather than paper check, and streamlining job duties among personnel. Matt truly cares about the residents of Wood County and takes seriously his duties as Auditor. He also takes seriously his duties as a citizen. Deeply rooted in our community – a father and husband, a farmer, and volunteer – Matt is actively engaged in the fabric of Wood County life. Matt Oestreich has demonstrated maturity, reasoning, accountability, and principled leadership as Wood County Auditor. Over the years the two of us have had many conversations about good governance, and the role of government in the lives of citizens. Simply put, Matt Oestreich “gets it.” Matthew Oestreich embodies all of the qualities of a true public servant. It is my good fortune in life to call him friend, and I am thrilled to vote for Matthew Oestreich for Wood County Auditor on November 6th. David Latta Kuebeck Bowling Green

Ottawa County Sheriff backs Kuhlman for District Court of Appeals

As Sheriff of Ottawa County, I have taken an oath to not only protect and serve my community, but also to ensure that like-minded people are placed into positions of trust. That is why I am voting Joel Kuhlman for Judge of the 6th District Court of Appeals. I have known Joel’s family my entire life. Joel’s father was a couple of years ahead of me at Eastwood High School, and his Uncle is married into our family. These men are of the highest integrity, exhibiting the leadership values that our youth will learn from for generations to come. Joel’s upbringing was instrumental in his receiving dual degrees from the University of Toledo (Engineering and Law), as well as his community work that he has already accomplished at a young age. Joel served as a Bowling Green City Councilman, as well as Wood County Commissioner. The integrity engrained in Joel through the family values he was taught from a young age will remain with him throughout his adult life. Therefore, it will also be evident through his service to our community as Judge within the 6th District Court of Appeals. Service to our community is of highest priority to me. And through recent conversations with Joel, I have confirmed that he feels just as strongly about putting service to his community ahead of his own needs. Please join me on November 6th in casting a vote for Joel Kuhlman as Judge, 6th District Court of Appeals. All of the 6th District should be represented in our Court of Appeals, not just Toledo and its immediate suburbs, which is the present case. I believe that a vote for Joel is a vote for our future. Thank you, Stephen J. Levorchick

Aidan Hubbell-Staeble responds to GOP mailer about old Facebook posts

Aidan Hubbell-Staeble, candidate for Ohio House District 3, released the following statement Tuesday, Oct. 9, after his opponent, Theresa Gavarone, publicized old social media posts addressing the issue of community police relations in Ohio: “A couple of years ago, I took to Facebook to describe the shooting of two individuals, Alton Sterling and Daniel Shaver, as unacceptable. Although the original post was incendiary and insensitive, the feelings that led to the post came from a meaningful place of anger and frustration. Time and time again, we are presented with videos and reports of unarmed or nonthreatening men and women losing their lives due to the actions of the very people who have vowed to protect them. It is very easy to get caught up in the hostile nature of social media and the hundreds of videos that look not too different from these. “The resurgence of these now-deleted posts has allowed me to reflect on my feelings from that time and revisit both videos shared in the posts. Both videos depict the death of these young men, not too far in age from myself, and still invoke some of those original feelings.  “However, instead of anger, I now feel passion. Instead of frustration, I now feel a responsibility to act. We are raised to believe that if we see an injustice, if we want a change, we need to take action to address it. That is why I’m running for public office. I want to be part of the change we need in Columbus. “I’m not your typical candidate. I don’t resemble many of the people you currently see in the State House; and that’s precisely the point. I’m running to amplify the voice of my neighbors, my friends, and my family. Police officers are important to our community and vital to our safety. When bad police officers are not held accountable for their actions, it erodes trust in the judicial system and makes it harder for good police officers to do their jobs. Our police risk their lives every day to protect us, and they too are taken for granted. We have seen Republican politicians attack police officers’ collective bargaining rights in the past, and will likely see more of the same in the future. This is not how any workers, especially those who are so dedicated to defending the State of Ohio, should be treated. I’m proud to keep fighting for all everyday Ohioans.”

Jean Geist: “Mike Galbraith wants to represent all people in the 5th Congressional District”

Mike Galbraith wants to represent all people in the 5th Congressional District. He has criss-crossed the 19 counties of our district numerous times over the past year+ meeting with farmers, small business owners, millennials & retirees. When we attended his “Old-Fashioned Rally” in Bowling Green, Mike addressed topics as varied as the price of soybeans to the health of Lake Erie. In the coming month before the midterm election he will be holding Town Halls and other public events in the following Northwest Ohio locations: Celina Delta Bryan Perrysburg Toledo Defiance Upper Sandusky Oak Harbor Grand Rapids Sylvania Wayne Napoleon Waterville Paulding Millbury Findlay If you live in these areas, I urge you to take the time to meet and listen to Michael Galbraith. And, ask yourself when was the last time you had the opportunity to talk to Bob Latta without paying $1000 a plate for a fundraiser? Jean Geist Bowling Green