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Dem's flier raises a flap over foe's pigeon plan



Published: Thu, October 26, 2006 @ 12:00 a.m.



Officials from both parties complained about the pigeon problem.

By D.A. WILKINSON

VINDICATOR SALEM BUREAU

LISBON -- The Ohio Democratic Party has released a flier for 1st District state representative candidate Linda Bolon that attacks her opponent for doing something she asked him to do -- get rid of those pesky pigeons.

Bolon, the Columbiana County treasurer, did not return messages Wednesday left at her office and on her cell phone.

Her opponent, Republican county commissioner Jim Hoppel, said he would not discuss the flier.

The four page, 81/2-by-11-inch glossy flier began appearing in mailboxes this week.

The cover and interior have photos mocking Hoppel.

But the text, under the heading of "Throws Money to the Birds," says Hoppel "authorized paying overtime to the county maintenance staff so they can feed the pigeons on top of public buildings."

The commissioners' maintenance man has been feeding pigeons on the roof of the courthouse to lead them to humane traps. Overtime was approved for the worker for one day.

Had signed petition

Bolon, however, was one of seven officeholders from both parties who signed a petition dated Aug. 10 that asked commissioners to do something about the pigeons and their droppings. Four county workers also signed the petition.

The officials and workers said the pigeon droppings were a potential health risk for county workers and the public as well as an eyesore.

Hoppel looked into the problem since he, under the commissioners' organization plan, is the point man for property and building issues.

A local man who works for Orkin pest control heard about the petition and has provided traps for free. More than 100 pigeons have been removed.

The flier also attacks Hoppel's budget cuts but does not mention that voters have twice defeated a 0.5 percent sales tax.

Randy Borntrager, a spokesman for Ohio Democratic Party said, "We stand by the facts."

But Borntrager said he would look into the situation.

wilkinson@vindy.com




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