(LFC Comments: This is part one of a five part series written by a Willoughby Hills lobbyist. Since we cannot corroborate every detail in the articles, we are placing it in our free speech zone.)
If you’ve driven down Chardon Road in Willoughby Hills between River and the Kirtland border lately, you might have noticed a parade of giant dump trucks dumping load after load just west of the bridge over the Chagrin River. If you didn’t see the dump trucks, you might be one of the people who almost crashed after skidding on the slick of mud left on the highway in their wake. Yes, this is odd. What’s odder is what you’ll find if you dig beneath the surface.
Everyone knows something odd is going on in Willoughby Hills politics. Most political fights are relegated to campaign season, but in Willoughby Hills seasons can change in an instant. The Good Ol’ Boys will fight any time with anyone who questions them or threatens their grip on the city. Is Willoughby Hills a case of the Good Ol’ Boys doing whatever it takes to keep the power in their hands and among friends and away from do-gooders who actually want to give the power to the people? Or perhaps the Good Ol’ Boys simply want to control who gets the millions of dollars a year coming into the City thanks to some of the highest taxes and fees in Lake County? It’s not because the Good Ol’ Boys want to do good, that’s certain.
Whatever explains the craziness in Willoughby Hills, the Good Ol’ Boys are alive and well and are willing to get down and dirty—literally. While the leaders of the Club might not be who you’d think, the leaders of the Club recruited a slate of candidates this past fall to do their dirty work: Andy Gardner for mayor and Chris Hallum, Joe Jarmuszkiewicz, Mike Kline and Tanya Taylor-Draper for City Council. Oddly, four out of these five Club-endorsed candidates received large donations from a mysterious benefactor from Mentor. Oddly, the Club formed their second Political Action Committee in two years which also received a sizable donation from this mystery donor.
Who is Cuvier Lukat and why would he dump thousands of dollars into the campaign coffers of a rag-tag band of political no-names in Willoughby Hills?
(LFC Comment: Here is the Ohio Campaign Finance Report – 2019 Pre-General Election for the PAC called ‘Neighbors for Responsible Government’ . Mr. Lukat’s $1,300.00 donation appears on page 3,
2019 PreGen RESPONSIBLE GOVT
Here is the 2019 Campaign Finance Report for Andy Gardner. Mr. Lukat’s $2,000 donation appears on page 6.
2019 PreGen GARDNER-G-A
Here is the Campaign Finance Report for Chris Hallum. Mr. Lukat’s $750.00 donation appears on page 2.
2019 PreGen HALLUM
Here is the Campaign Finance Report for Joe Jarmuszkiewicz. Mr. Lukat’s $1,500.00 donation appears on page 2.
2019 PreGen JARMUSZKIEWICZ
Here is the Campaign Finance Report for Mike Kline. Mr. Lukat’s $500.00 donation appears on page 4.
2019 PreGen KLINE
It appears that Tanya Taylor-Draper did not receive a donation from Mr. Lukat.
Total campaign donation by Mr. Lukat = $6,050.00
Was Mr. Lukat being just a “nice guy”, a concerned citizen working for the betterment of mankind, or was he trying to buy influence with the City Council?
Stay tuned for part 2, as we unravel this mystery in Willoughby Hills…)