A Better Lake County Does Not Like Transparency

By Brian Massie, Citizen Journalist, Mugwump

Well, I see some of my “fans” were exercising their First Amendment rights on Facebook.

https://m.facebook.com/story.php/?story_fbid=pfbid028Fak4mCrUZPZ6DWPqtaiVJuFv4AoLJE3mXynj2F8VnZPdwRYmqAWfihGpK5yJXYEl&id=100085604259829

Now why would someone even concern themselves with an average citizen promoting honesty, integrity and transparency in government? Could it be that our investigation into who and what is “A Better Lake County” has given some local politicians a severe case of “acid reflux”? Are they concerned that they will be exposed by, as former Commissioner and now Senator Jerry Cirino called us, a “moronic blog”? Tsk, Tsk…we are but humble watchmen on the wall promoting Biblical truths by exposing the lies, deceptions and betrayals.

Is the Lake County “Uni-party” about to be exposed?

Here is what we have so far on “A Better Lake County”:

The entity known as “A Better Lake County” is registered with the State of Ohio and is a 501 (c) (4) non-profit with the Internal Revenue Service. Their registered agent is Mr. Scott Allan Pullins of Mount Vernon, Ohio.

What is the difference between a 501 (c) (4) non-profit and a Political Action Committee? We found this website that does a great job of explaining the difference.

What is a 501 (c) (4) Non-Profit?

A 501(c)(4) is a popular choice for groups that wish to pursue activities that are intended, broadly speaking, to promote change within society. A chief reason for choosing 501(c)(4) over 501(c)(3) is that a 501(c)(4) is permitted to lobby for legislative or regulatory changes, and is also allowed to promote its agenda through public campaigns so long as these efforts do not become a primary activity of the organization. The National Rifle Association is a good example of a high profile 501(c)(4) that demonstrates an extensive engagement in political activity.

What is a PAC?

An important limitation of the 501(c)(4) is that it cannot be organized primarily for the purpose of influencing political campaigns. Although a 501(c)(4) may offer endorsements of candidates that agree with its positions, it must be careful to avoid appearing to be primarily about supporting a particular candidate or party. If a group wants to organize primarily to support a particular federal political campaign, it should look at forming a PAC instead.

A PAC’s chief purpose is to pool money together from its members and contributors for purposes of supporting a particular candidate or political issue. By definition, a federal PAC is an organization that raises or spends more than $1,000 in a calendar year in connection with supporting a candidate or issue in a federal election. Federal PACs are governed by federal election law, which requires registration with the Federal Election Commission and provides specific limits on how much a PAC can directly contribute to a candidate per election ($5,000) or to a national party per year ($15,000). A PAC is allowed to receive up to $5,000 per year from an individual donor.

To be totally transparent with our readers, we have sent the following four public records requests looking for ties to “A Better Lake County”:

*****

To: Michael DeLeone, Lake County Assistant Prosecutor

Dear Mr. Deleone:

Pursuant to Ohio Revised Code Section 149.43, I respectfully request that you retrieve and provide a complete copy of the contents of Auditor Chris Galloway’s Lake County work computer and/or laptop, including, but not limited to, any and all documents related to the Ohio non-profit corporation registered as A Better Lake County. I prefer the records to be delivered electronically. Specifically, I request:

1. All public records from the Lake County computer hard drive of Auditor Chris Galloway;

2. All public records, correspondence, emails, text messages, communications, from the Lake County computer hard drive of Auditor Chris Galloway between Chris Galloway and any or all of the following individuals, for the time period July 1, 2021 through the present:

a. Daniel Crowder;

b. Kevin Malecek;

c. Christopher Hallum;

d. Julie Belich;

e. Michael Kline;

f. G. Andrew Gardner; 

g. Michael Lucas; 

h. Ross McDonald

i. Scott Pullins; and/or

j. any person with an email address that includes “@abetterlakecounty.org“.

3. The telephone log on any Lake County computer of Auditor Galloway for the time period July 1, 2021 through the present.

4. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, all emails, texts, documents, communications on the Lake County computer of Lake County Auditor Chris Galloway or Lake County Commissioner John Hamercheck utilizing, identifying or containing any or all of the following terms:

a. A Better Lake County

b. Crowder

c. Malecek

d. Hallum

e. Belich

f. Lucus

g. Kline

h. 501(c)(4)

i. Pullins
j. Dark money
k. Fellows
l. Pizmoht
m. Dellas
n. Frames
o. Trexler
p. Facebook
q. PAC
r. Gallagher Sharp
s. Dworkin and Bernstein
t. Flaiz
u. abetterlakecounty.org

5. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, all documents on the Lake County Computer of Auditor Galloway that include draft, iterations, articles of incorporation filed with the Ohio Secretary of State, any IRS form or application or any Ohio Attorney General form or application for A Better Lake County.

6. For the time period of January 1, 2021 through the present, the internet search history on Auditor Galloway’s county-issued computers, laptops or cell phones. 

7. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, all public records requests for Auditor Chris Galloway.

8. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, the results of all public records requests for Auditor Chris Galloway.

Thank you,

Brian Massie

Lobbyists for Citizens
a 501 (c) (4) Non-Profit

*****

To: Mr. Kenneth Filipiak, City of Mentor

Dear Mr. Filipiak:

Pursuant to Ohio Revised Code Section 149.43, I respectfully request that you retrieve and provide a complete copy of the contents of Economic Development Director Kevin Malecek’s city work computer, work laptop, and/or city-issued cell phone including, but not limited to, any and all documents related to the Ohio non-profit corporation registered as A Better Lake County. I prefer the records to be delivered electronically. Specifically, I request:

1. All public records from the Mentor CIty hard drive or city-issued cell phone of Director Kevin Malecek;

2. All public records, correspondence, emails, text messages, communications, from the city computer hard drive and/or city-issued cellphone of Director Kevin Malecek  between Kevin Malecek and any or all of the following individuals, for the time period July 1, 2021 through the present:

a. Daniel Crowder;

b. Chris Galloway

c. Jerry Cirino;

d. Christopher Hallum;

e. Julie Belich;

f. Michael Kline;

g. G. Andrew Gardner; 

h. Michael Lucas; 

i. Phil Trexler; 

j. Ross MacDonald

k. Scott Pullins; and/or

l. any person with an email address that includes “@abetterlakecounty.org“.

3. The telephone log on any city computer or city-issued cell phone of  Director Kevin Malecek  for the time period July 1, 2021 through the present.

4. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, all emails, texts, documents, communications on the city computer or city-issued cell phone of  Director Kevin Malecek utilizing, identifying or containing any or all of the following terms:

a. A Better Lake County

b. Crowder

c. Galloway

d. Cirino

e. Hallum

f. Belich

g. Lucus

h. Kline

i. 501(c)(4)

j. Pullins
k. Dark money
l. Fellows
m. Pizmoht
n. Dellas
o. Frames
p. Trexler
q. Facebook
r. PAC
s. Gallagher Sharp
t. Dworkin and Bernstein
u. Flaiz
v. abetterlakecounty.org

5. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, all documents on the city computer or city-issued cell phone of Director Kevin Malecek that include draft, iterations, articles of incorporation filed with the Ohio Secretary of State, any IRS form or application or any Ohio Attorney General form or application for A Better Lake County.

6. All of the contents of the Mentor city employment file for Kevin Malecek, including, but not limited to, any documents containing Kevin Malecek’s salary, benefits, additional compensation, promotions, demotions or discipline.

7. For the time period of January 1, 2021 through the present, the internet search history on Kevin Malecek’s city-issued computer, laptop or cell phone. 

8. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, all public records requests for Director Kevin Malecek.

9. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, the results of all public records requests for Director Kevin Malecek.

Thank you,
Brian Massie
Lobbyists for Citizens
a 501 (c) (4) Non-Profit

*****

To Mayor Gardner of Willoughby-Hills

Dear Clerk:

Pursuant to Ohio Revised Code Section 149.43, I respectfully request that you retrieve and provide a complete copy of the contents of each council members’ city email account, city work computer, work laptop, and/or city-issued cell phone including, but not limited to, any and all documents related to the Ohio non-profit corporation registered as A Better Lake County. I prefer the records to be delivered electronically. Specifically, I request:

1. All public records from any city-issued email address, city computer or laptop hard drive or city-issued cell phone of each member of council;

2. All public records, correspondence, emails, text messages, communications, from the city email, city computer or laptop hard drive and/or city-issued cell phone of every council member between any such council member and any or all of the following individuals, for the time period July 1, 2021 through the present:

a. Daniel Crowder;

b. Chris Galloway

c. Jerry Cirino;

d. John Hamercheck;

e. Kevin Malecek; 

f. Phil Trexler;

g. Scott Pullins; and/or

h. any person with an email address that includes “@abetterlakecounty.org

3. The telephone log on any city computer or city-issued cell phone of any council member for the time period July 1, 2021 through the present.

4. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, all emails, text messages, documents, communications on the city email account, city computer or laptop or city-issued cell phone of  each council member utilizing, identifying or containing any or all of the following terms:

a. A Better Lake County

b. Crowder

c. Galloway

d. Cirino

e. Hamercheck

f. 501(c)(4)

g. Pullins
h. Dark money
i. Fellows
j. Pizmoht
k. Dellas
l. Plecnik
m. Frames
n. Trexler
o. Facebook
p. PAC
q. Gallagher Sharp
r. Dworkin and Bernstein
s. Flaiz
t. abetterlakecounty.org

5. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, all documents in the city email account, city computer or laptop or city-issued cell phone of any council member that include draft, iterations, articles of incorporation filed with the Ohio Secretary of State, any IRS form or application or any Ohio Attorney General form or application for A Better Lake County.

6. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, any and all emails, text messages, memoranda, letters, opinions, or any other correspondence that reference the Willoughby Hills Council Member compensation, wages, benefits or any other compensation or benefit of employment of any or future member of Willoughby Hills City Council. 

7. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, any and all emails, text messages, memoranda, letters, opinions, or any other correspondence to or from any Willoughby Hills Council member that reference changes to any Willoughby Hills tax rate, reference any tax levy, or reference changes to any Willoughby Hills law related to taxes.

8. For the time period of January 1, 2021 through the present, the internet search history on any Council members’ city-issued computer, laptop or cell phone. 

9. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, all public records requests for any.

10. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, the results of all public records requests for Mayor Gardner.

Thank you,
Brian Massie
Lobbyists for Citizens
a 501 (c) (4) Non-Profit

*****

To Willoughby Hills Council

Dear Clerk:

Pursuant to Ohio Revised Code Section 149.43, I respectfully request that you retrieve and provide a complete copy of the contents of each council members’ city email account, city work computer, work laptop, and/or city-issued cell phone including, but not limited to, any and all documents related to the Ohio non-profit corporation registered as A Better Lake County. I prefer the records to be delivered electronically. Specifically, I request:

1. All public records from any city-issued email address, city computer or laptop hard drive or city-issued cell phone of each member of council;

2. All public records, correspondence, emails, text messages, communications, from the city email, city computer or laptop hard drive and/or city-issued cell phone of every council member between any such council member and any or all of the following individuals, for the time period July 1, 2021 through the present:

a. Daniel Crowder;

b. Chris Galloway

c. Jerry Cirino;

d. John Hamercheck;

e. Kevin Malecek; 

f. Phil Trexler;

g. Scott Pullins; and/or

h. any person with an email address that includes “@abetterlakecounty.org

3. The telephone log on any city computer or city-issued cell phone of any council member for the time period July 1, 2021 through the present.

4. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, all emails, text messages, documents, communications on the city email account, city computer or laptop or city-issued cell phone of  each council member utilizing, identifying or containing any or all of the following terms:

a. A Better Lake County

b. Crowder

c. Galloway

d. Cirino

e. Hamercheck

f. 501(c)(4)

g. Pullins
h. Dark money
i. Fellows
j. Pizmoht
k. Dellas
l. Plecnik
m. Frames
n. Trexler
o. Facebook
p. PAC
q. Gallagher Sharp
r. Dworkin and Bernstein
s. Flaiz
t. abetterlakecounty.org

5. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, all documents in the city email account, city computer or laptop or city-issued cell phone of any council member that include draft, iterations, articles of incorporation filed with the Ohio Secretary of State, any IRS form or application or any Ohio Attorney General form or application for A Better Lake County.

6. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, any and all emails, text messages, memoranda, letters, opinions, or any other correspondence that reference the Willoughby Hills Council Member compensation, wages, benefits or any other compensation or benefit of employment of any or future member of Willoughby Hills City Council. 

7. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, any and all emails, text messages, memoranda, letters, opinions, or any other correspondence to or from any Willoughby Hills Council member that reference changes to any Willoughby Hills tax rate, reference any tax levy, or reference changes to any Willoughby Hills law related to taxes.

8. For the time period of January 1, 2021 through the present, the internet search history on any Council members’ city-issued computer, laptop or cell phone. 

9. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, all public records requests for any.

10. For the time period January 1, 2021 through the present, the results of all public records requests for Mayor Gardner.

Thank you,
Brian Massie
Lobbyists for Citizens
a 501 (c) (4) Non-Profit

*****

Advertisements

Please support Lake County’s Sub Zero Mission

*****



Categories: Community Activism, Lake County Politics