Dear Residents of Ward 2 and the City of Mentor


August 5, 2013

This letter is to serve as my formal letter resignation as Mentor City Councilwoman for Ward 2. My last day of public service will be August 19, 2013. It has been my distinct honor and humble privilege to serve the residents of Ward 2 and the City of Mentor. This decision was mine alone and made after much personal reflection and prayer. It was not easy.

IN MY OPINION….Public servants including me are real people, not perfect, with real
life joys and struggles similar to those which we are elected to serve. It has taken me some most unwanted, unexpected changes in my personal life to see the need to realign my both my personal and professional priorities. I also most recently have come to fully understand and now publically acknowledge that I have completely lost my voice both literally and figuratively in Mentor politics. This revelation came to me last Thursday‟s after attending and even speaking (totally unplanned, unprepared, hoarse, and off the cuff) at the Mentor Planning Commission meeting in which another change to the development plan immediately adjacent to our home of 18 plus years was discussed and approved. It now must come to Council for final approval and likely will be unless this letter motivates some to change their minds. Who knows? Your guess is really as good as mine and sadly I am an elected official for the City of Mentor. You should know however that it is an election year for 3 members of Mentor City Council and unfortunately this letter may be the impetus for them to change their minds and finally do the right thing each and every time and not just sometimes. We will all just have to wait and see. Compromise should not be part of the equation of doing what is right including with a developer and the City of Mentor and neither out of a fear or threat of a lawsuit. Lawsuits are a legal means of standing up for what what someone feel is right or wrong, a huge personal risk of putting everything out there to find some justice and some inner peace. People and organizations should never be afraid to file or run from lawsuits if they are strong and courageous in their convictions. I encourage Mentor resident‟s to start attending Council meetings again and speaking out against things you feel need correction and/or attention in Mentor. Unfortunately, you still will have to wait until the end of the Council meeting to speak - another issue I tried to seek change as a Councilwoman but the Council majority would listen at the time. Residents, taxpayers should be given the right to speak first at each and every meeting of Mentor City Council. The threat of legal action by the developer is the rumor residents are once again hearing on their neighborhood streets. How many times does a developer who lives in another community get to change a court approved development plan here in the City of Mentor at the expense of the resident‟s home values and quality of life? So many changes that we all have lost count I am absolutely certain of that.

This development change passed Mentor Planning Commission last Thursday by a vote of 4 to 1. Mentor Residents should watch the meeting on the City website in the Channel 12 archives. After doing so ask yourself voters, taxpayers, residents why was a vote on such a controversial matter allowed to be voted upon with 2 members of the Commission absent? Sadly again as your Ward Councilman I also do not know. The plan will not need to come to Council for a vote likely at the August 20th meeting. I encourage all to attend. The PC meeting last Thursday is the second saddest meeting I have ever attended as a Mentor City Councilwoman. The Special Meeting of Mentor Council last Wednesday regarding the horrific flooding was the first and the deer related work sessions and Council meetings the third. In the case of the Planning Commission, common sense and empathy are gone and politically appointed people who cannot be held accountable for their votes by the voters and taxpayers are in my humble opinion completely ruining the quality of life and property values again of so many here in the City of Mentor. This plan as many know is the exact reason I decided to enter the unchartered territory of politics. This plan has already negatively impacted the quality of life and property value of my hardworking, law-abiding, taxpaying family and entire neighborhood and continues to do so. I would wish on no one what has occurred to our entire neighborhood of Eleanor Court. The creep and impact is now moving further north and east to more taxpaying, residential homes along Garfield Road. It is unconscionable. The political machine is up and running, growing, morphing and appears to be unstoppable right here in Mentor and under our very own eyes. Today the innate personal drive and ability to do the right thing as my parents tried to instill in all three of their children including me is more frequently being lost to the dark side of money and greed. While revenues, business, and growth are all essential in a community for it to thrive, the question of balance and quality of life must remain at the forefront in each and every decision of every elected and politically appointed official. For a community like Mentor to remain vibrant, attractive, and successful, elected officials must remember to work hard

publically and humbly so that Mentor continues to be a fine place to live, work and play. None is
more or less important than another. They are all equal. No business owner, prospective business owner, developer, prospective developer, criminal, resident, member of Council or the City Administration, human being should be treated any worse or better than any other business owner, prospective business owner, developer, prospective developer, criminal, resident, member of Council or the City Administration, human being just because they „know someone‟ or have big money behind them regardless of the circumstance. Period. This has been last sight of by too many organizations, municipalities, people in today‟s society. Mentor certainly has changed since I was child growing up on Cadle Avenue eagerly attending Mentor Public Schools (and getting an exceptional education). Many of the changes I welcome but many especially in the last 10 years I do not.

I strongly urge voters to do their homework regarding each issue, each incentive grant given to large and small businesses alike, tax levy and most importantly every candidate especially before going to the polls starting this November 2013. Please do not believe everything that you read in the slick expensive campaign literature including the ego filled „I‟ messages. Please do not overlook the grassroots‟ candidates like myself, they almost always want to give back and make a difference in some small way. Politicians toot their own horns, public servants do not. Sit back and observe candidates in their private lives, their interests and hobbies, the places you see them with and without their families, their public Facebook and Twitter accounts and decide for yourself if the candidate would best represent you and your values and ideas. Be smart, do not stalk but watch them „legally‟ in every way possible like you do your own kids! Scrutinize their campaign finance reports with a fine tooth comb which are all public record. Watch out for the game playing. Public service should never benefit an individual in their private life, and just because it is legal it in no way makes it right. Do you only see those up for re-election at parties, ribbon cutting events, cocktail receptions or on the camera/TV? Do they work hard or hardly work? Do you only see your elected officials playing hard? How have they responded to you as a resident when you have called them with a problem? Please know I have called the Ohio Ethics Commission on many issues before deciding to run for elected office. Their response was, “While that looks sounds and smells fishy for an elected official, we need proof and unfortunately do not have enough investigators to help find the evidence of unethical behavior.” Maybe we need a series of events similar to what happened in Cleveland to help weed out some of the people, the decision and policy makers right out of public office right here in our City if need be? Despite what you have repeatedly heard from some candidates or current members of Council, a government in my opinion cannot be run like a business. It is not a business. Maybe in some small ways it can be run like a business ie. Personnel matters, evaluations etc. customer service, but by enlarge it cannot. Its responsibilities are much different thus the terminology public versus private sector. Its revenues are not personal investments, risk taking monies but rather hard earned monies of the people known as „taxpayer dollars‟. Any investment in the community with taxpayer dollars should benefit the most people, for the longest period of time with the least amount of risk possible. It is also NOT the role of the government to create jobs or even save jobs at the taxpayer‟s, resident‟s expense. You might want to publically request (your right) and read and find out about some of the sweetheart deals also known as Mentor Incentive Grants (MIG) in negotiations between some of your elected officials and businesses in recent years, many before my entering the political arena here in Mentor. The grants given to the small business owner here in Mentor are much harder to obtain. Look back at Mentor‟s history including the land swap of 10 acres of prime real estate to a developer for City swamp land.

Mentor is an attractive community on its own merit and elected officials should not be giving away the moon to draw and/or keep business here especially when these tax dollar revenues belong to the people, the residents of Mentor and only to be listed in bold print letters on campaign literature by those up for re-election. It truly is self promotion at the taxpayer‟s, resident‟s expense. VOTERS BEWARE. Remember a grant or a subsidy is a risk being taken with taxpayer‟s money no matter the level of government. It is occurring at every level of our government today. People who know me know I am for helping people, the poor, the people who have fallen on hard times no matter what the reason, Mentor residents truly in need, we must give them all HOPE. It says so in the Bible. Unfortunately, today the undeserving, unmotivated, self sufficient whether it be people or business (small and large) are receiving monies from the government to our own detriment. It is called debt including the ever growing national debt. Please after reading my letter of resignation do not give up HOPE but know it is harder for good, hardworking, conscientious, God fearing people to enter into public service today and make a difference as I can now attest to. So many people are seeking wealth, power and prestige instead. Many today do not care how many bodies they must trample over to finish the race first. The number of public servants is inversely disproportionate to the number of politicians. It seems to be many without a real platform or a voting record to be proud, people we would never trust our children or investments are making their way into positions of power and influence at an alarming rate. It will be interesting to see how many of the candidates will be opposed this November in the Mentor election. Who wouldn‟t want to vote for just themselves one time and win? It is easy. It is a cakewalk into politics and not a hard fought race into public service. I strongly feel this is a crime of sorts but is occurring more and more in politics nationwide. There are many who entered politics for all the right reasons but do not do or more importantly say the right thing around the filing deadline (which in Mentor is in a day or so?) in order to avoid drawing an opponent. That is horrific for our democracy here in Mentor and nationwide. People fought and died and continue to do so to protect our freedom to vote. What freedoms are you exercising when there is only one name listed in the ballot box? Real people like me who want to go into public service often do not in fear of unwarranted, unnecessary rumors, cartoons, PACs and attacks on one‟s own family. Sadly I recall all the dirty attack ads and cartoons that were depicted at the eleventh hour by my opponent and various PACS out of Mentor-on-the-Lake. Do you? These came at a time just 3 months after our world lost a good man in a husband, father, son, Veteran, friend, my Dad. It was hard to keep plugging along but I did because I knew the people who knew me and my family knew the real story as I did myself. I knew immediately Mentor politics had become a dirty game. I am a firm believer that no candidate should ever run unopposed including me. It is not good for our democracy at any level of government.

I also feel very strongly that voters are putting entirely too much faith in their elected officials once elected. They are not holding their feet to the fire so to speak. Unfortunately, the victor may in fact not be the best person for the job. The victor may in fact be the one with the biggest campaign pocketbooks. There is no level playing field here in Mentor any longer. One of my Dad‟s greatest concerns before he died and before I decide to file and run for public office was what politics might do to me as a person, his oldest daughter. He was most concerned that as his daughter I might grow a „thick skin‟ due to the nature of the political machine. He was concerned that I might be changed and become a person without a moral compass, chasing power, prestige and money. I am most proud to say that I am the same person (not perfect, not any better or worse than any other) with the same values as I was the day I entered the political arena. I hold the same values as were taught by my loving not perfect parents with the best of intentions. I am deeply sad however to see people change in the pursuit and after holding public office. In addition, too many are entering politics and staying way too long causing much destruction along the way. It is time for me to bow out gracefully and while I still can walk away with my head up high. I believe I have been able to help some people in some small way and give back to a community which I have proudly called home for 45+ years. I am proud of the fact that my experience in politics has not changed me only enlightened me. I am proud to say after 5 ½ years that I am an experienced public servant and a very inexperienced politician! Dad I hope you are looking down and smiling. I hope I have made you proud. A few days ago in complete exhaustion and frustration after attending both a special meeting Mentor City Council for the devastating flooding that recently occurred on July 20, 2013 and the Mentor Planning Commission meeting regarding more development and changes to a PUD, I indicated in an email from City email address that I would be willing to help any person who is considering running against Council incumbents in the upcoming Council at – large races. I deeply

regret and sincerely apologize for this comment. The decision to enter politics is deeply
personal and not one somebody else should convince someone to do. You must be confident and grounded and have the personal and financial support of so many people unlike years ago. People unfortunately are selling their souls and values all in an effort to run and/or maintain their elected office. It takes a special kind of person to enter public service as so many have wondered why and how I have been in it to them „for so long‟. Instead I will be doing my best to reclaim my private life as a proud wife, mother, daughter, daughter-in-law, sister, friend and child of God. I look forward to all that this entails. With a love of people and an appreciation of the arts, nature, travels, home improvement projects as taught to me by my parents, I have a lot of living yet to do! I will rest knowing I did my best as a Councilwoman. That is all we can ask of ourselves and each other every day. In time I may pursue other adventures and entrepreneurial interests as one of my former Council colleagues and friend Ron Micchia often

encourages me to do. But for right now I am looking forward to being home with my family, people whom I love and love me unconditionally just as God does. Serve God first and then family as former Councilman and friend Eddy Walsh always reminds me. Who knows, maybe my husband and I even may take up the game of golf at Blackbrook together (love) , take our eldest daughter to NYC (adventure) , and our family to Washington D. C (history).? Finally, I wish to publically thank my parents for all their love, support and encouragement all my life. They have been there for all three of their children as best as they were able and through some pretty horrific life changing, challenging events. That is the truest definition of love. They were not the perfect but the PERFECT PARENTS FOR ME and my brother John and sister Marianne and did their best with the best of intentions for all three of their children every minute of every day. There were no favorites growing up in our home. Our Dad, who we all miss every day, was a self taught engineer, who never went to college, I do not believe finished high school (don‟t know, don‟t care), had 2 patents, was a proud Marine, could tell a joke like no other, loved history, music, old movies-cars-music, and could tinker like no other. He taught us to be confident, independent thinkers, not afraid to take risks and too many life skills to list here. Our Mom is a humble Christian woman who still lives in our childhood home, who loves all God‟s people and would do anything to help anyone anytime anywhere, loves nature, the arts, fun, smiles and of course adventure. She was the best geriatric LPN nurse here at Mentor Way Villa Nursing home for so many years. Not many young nurses graduate nursing school with a calling to care for the elderly. She did. She is special and I am proud to call her my Mom. They both together in their own ways taught us to live simply, give generously, love deeply. You truly are the best parents and each of your children is so blessed to have you. I hope I have made you both proud. May God bless the residents of Mentor, its elected officials, the Administration and the United States of America. Sincerely, Carolyn Patrice Bucks Bucey Carolyn (my parents named me while they were dating) Patrice (my Dad loved this name) Bucks (shortened from the Hungarian name of „Buckivicius‟ by my grandfather due to frequent misspellings) Bucey (I met the love of my life through my brother in law Danny who I was sat next to and had a locker immediately adjacent in MPS grades 7-12) I kindly request privacy at this time of transition back to being a proud graduate of MPS, taxpayer, homeowner, law abiding citizen (Lord willing (smile)), and resident of Mentor. Thanking you in advance for your understanding and consideration of this heartfelt request.