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  LWV Voter’s Guide Provides Insight Into Candidates For Trustee And School Board  
  September 30, 2021 Edition  
     BY JOHN A. DARNELL JR.
      associate editor
      The League of Women Voters (LWV) has released its 2021 Voter Information Guide that includes information on interest to Boardman voters, including for Boardman Township Trustee and Boardman Local School Board. The information is non-partisan and comes directly from questionnaires submitted by candidates.
      On the ballot for Trustee are incumbents Brad Calhoun and Tom Costello, opposed by Tabitha Fitz-Patrick and Joseph Pavone.
      On the ballot for Boardman Local School Board are incumbents John Fryda, John Landers and Vickie Davis, opposed by Anthony Buchmann.
      Township Trustee Race
      Calhoun, 58, has served three terms on the Board of Trustees and notes he has extensive training in labor contracts and budgeting, as well as “a working relationship with many stakeholders.”
      Costello, 71, has served for 18 years as a trustee and says that service “has prepared me for the challenges facing Boardman.
      “I am proud of my ability to work with other elected officials to build support for community improvement.”
      Citing her “qualifications for office,” Fitz-Patrick, 34, says “Micro, macro and mezzo experience with policy and program development, implementation and advocation.” She says she is a licensed social worker with five years of experience.
      Pavone, 46, did not provide the LWV a direct response to his qualifications, instead referring the query to a social media site.
      Fitz-Patrick and Pavone both sought the office of township trustee two years ago and lost.
      Each candidate for Trustee was asked by the LWV about their priorities for Boardman Township.
      Calhoun responded his priorities are sound fiscal policies, maintain strong police and fire protection, improve road and infrastructure projects, protect the integrity of neighborhoods and continue to partner with the ABC Water District to secure grants to upgrade stormwater systems.
      “I am committed to serving this community and listening to their concerns while tasking our team leaders with finding solutions, Calhoun said, adding “Together we can make Boardman Township a proud community.”
      Costello said he has four priorities, including---
       •Continue to be fiscally responsible and live within our budget;
       •Continue to completely support both our police and fire departments, keeping them adequately staffed and equipped;
       •Work to improve road and storm sewer infrastructure projects;
       •Work closely with the ABC Water District.
      “All of these priorities can only be accomplished by working cooperatively as a team, “ Costello said.
      Fitz-Patrick suggests one of her priorities as a township trustee would be the installation of central air conditioning “in all Boardman school buildings,” as well as “more financial support for our schools,” while saying another priority is “Less taxes for homeowners.”
      Fitz-Patrick’s priorities also include flooding and sewer issues (Editor’s note: sewer issues are under the province of the county engineer), creation of emergency medical services (Editor’s note: that Boardman Township already provides), more financial support for Boardman Park, installation of a sidewalk on Southern Blvd., stretching from Western Reserve Rd. to Market St (Editor’s note: Southern Blvd. does not intersect with Market St. in Boardman Township); as well as creation of community gardens and “advocating for our residents and their needs.”
      Pavone says his priority is “listening and working with the residents will come first. Take the time to listen and explore different solutions to an issue.”
      Boardman Local School Board
      Fryda, 54, has served on the Boardman Local School Board for four years; while Davis, 55, has served on the school board since 2014; and Landers, 39; is a 12-year member of the school board.
      In citing his qualifications to serve on the school board, Buchmann responds “Tradesman. I believe I will bring uniqueness to the school board, showing those not ‘designed’ for college that there are great options that pay well without the extreme debt of college.
      “I am also an American citizen, a husband and father of teenagers.”
      Fryda points out his priorities for the school district include serving all citizens, support for a safe and positive learning environment in which students, parents, teachers and administration can witness the opportunity for all students to succeed in academics, athletics, art, technology and trades in the Boardman schools.”
      He says that fiscal accountability “is vital” and believes advocating for fair school funding “that benefits the taxpayers of Boardman.”
      Davis says she will continue “to stretch taxpayer dollars past their expiration date while continuing for fight the unfairness of public school funding at the state level.”
      She adds, “The role of a school board member is also to support the community around them. I will continue to support redevelopment and renovation plans of major investors and small business owners while keeping the Boardman school system the centerpiece of the community.”
      Landers says his priorities include continue advocation for the Ohio Fair School Funding plan, continue the evolution and improvement of school district communications to the community and the utilization of technology “and other methods design,” and “implement continued growth in in-person and online learning while supporting individual pathways to learn.”
      Buchmann says “the priorities that I believe that are important are safety, transparency, accountability and trades,” as well as “zero tolerance for bullying with a much more severe consequence for the person found to have caused the issue.”
      Buchmann also calls for “being more transparent when it comes to communication with the voters, especially before major decisions are made.”
      He says “kids need to learn more real life skills such as counting money and using a check register “rather than take classes that will do absolutely nothing for them in the real world.”
 
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