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Should public take charges by Costanzo seriously?



Published: Tue, August 23, 2005 @ 12:00 a.m.



Should public take chargesby Costanzo seriously?

EDITOR:

This is in response to your editorial of Aug. 7, titled "Costanzo's claims in court demand an official reaction."

Anyone who had dealings with Ms. Costanzo was likely "entertained" by her bombastic approach to the practice of law. The entertainment experience would no doubt have included her use of colorful language and exaggeration for emphasis.

Ms. Costanzo's quote that ".... there were a lot of days I had to appear in front of seven, nine, 11 judges, and each one of those judges expected me to either give them an envelope, support their financial campaigns, act in a certain way, do this, do that" is an example of her bombastic "take-no-prisoners" approach to the practice of law.

Even a cursory examination of her quoted statements would reveal that, for most people, such statements would fail to pass a simple reasonability test. To appear in front of 11 judges in one day would certainly qualify for mention in the Guinness Book of World Records, for example.

Nevertheless, your assertion that "the cloud of suspicion ... just got darker" is a fair assessment of the unresolved investigation of corruption in Trumbull County.

The saying "justice delayed is justice denied" certainly applies to the present situation in Trumbull County.

When the delay of justice involves government, it has a corrosive effect not only on the opinion of those it serves but also on the reputations and abilities of government officials and employees -- whether they are involved or not.

I and other attorneys in Trumbull County have been asked for our opinions by friends and clients concerning the legal justice system in Trumbull County.

My response is at the opposite end of the spectrum from the assertions and innuendo of Ms. Costanzo's colorful ruminations. I would be shocked if, upon investigation, the court system throughout Trumbull County -- including the court of appeals, the common pleas court, the municipal courts, and the county courts -- received a grade of less than "A."

Unfortunately, the unresolved issues regarding the Trumbull County purchasing scandal affect every elected officeholder in Trumbull County. Until there is a definite resolution to this long unresolved scandal, there will be a "cloud of suspicion" hanging over the county. This is not a proper environment for an effective government. This is the kind of environment that lends itself to distrust of government, speculation regarding various county offices, and a general malaise throughout the government, which affects county employees and the voters.

The "cloud of suspicion" that hangs over Trumbull County will not be dissipated until there is a thorough and conclusive completion of the complete investigation, which has spanned three Trumbull County grand juries.

If a sitting governor can be investigated as quickly as Gov. Bob Taft has been, there is absolutely no reason for the three or so major unresolved Trumbull County investigations to remain incomplete.

Though they may not be as newsworthy as the first sitting Ohio governor to be charged with a crime, these unresolved issues are far more important to the citizens of Trumbull County than the transgressions of the governor.

PAUL E. HELTZELTrumbull County commissioner

Union mentality in Valleyhinders change, growth

EDITOR:

The union mentality is alive and well in Youngstown, Ohio. No matter how much of a struggle companies, schools, universities and others may have, the good folks of Youngstown and Mahoning County want what they want when they want it. This is exactly what's wrong with this Valley. This is exactly why nothing will change.

MARGARTET HENNING

Poland




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