Townships rap mayor for annexation stance

The township association will try to solicit businesses in Warren to relocate to nearby townships.
WARREN -- Mayor Hank Angelo said he is going to continue opposing a new annexation law despite criticism from members of the Trumbull County Township Association.
Angelo said he received a letter from the township association today that condemns his public comments and opposition to a bill recently approved by Gov. Bob Taft.
The association said that because of Angelo's stance, township officials will solicit businesses in Warren to relocate to neighboring townships.
His reasoning: "I don't represent the townships -- I represent the city of Warren," Angelo said this morning. "I'm concerned with the city of Warren. I also believe this legislation takes away individual property owners' rights, and I am against that."
Angelo also is spearheading a referendum campaign to repeal the annexation bill. The law will not allow a property owner to annex land into a city unless it meets the common good for the area.
The letter to Angelo, dated Sept. 21, states that the state township association, the state county commissioner's association and the Ohio Municipal League worked together to come up with the annexation reform bill. The township association said the bill is designed to help balance the rights of municipalities and townships with regard to development and annexation.
"For you now to cry foul and disavow this legislation, plants the seeds of community discord and constitutes a wholly unjustifiable defiance of the public interest," the letter states.
Competition: The letter further notes that the township association will "aggressively oppose" the referendum action, and "actively compete with you for new business and development in Trumbull County."
The Trumbull County Township Association consists of leaders from all of the county's townships.

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