I remind people of the October 26, 2007 entry of Roland Hansen Commentary Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority: Public Accountability or Not? in which I brought up the issue of accountability of and for the quasi-public, tax-payer supported agency. If you do not recall the entry or if you had not previously read it, I suggest you read that entry now before proceeding any further.
Apparently, the taxpayers don't much mind authorizing tax dollars to a nonprofit agency that pays a salary to its CEO that is much more than than the salary of many elected officials. I wonder how many taxpayers of the City of Toledo and of the other parts of Lucas County pay attention (let alone realize) to the salary that is paid to James Hartung, President of The Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority. For those who may not be aware of the tax support given to that private, nonprofit agency, I draw your attention to the fact that the taxpayers of Lucas County are contributing 2.5 million dollars a year to the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority in the form of a tax levy that the voters themselves have approved.
For those who may not be aware of the salary issue, I suggest you read this newspaper account about the issue (or is it really a non-issue) of the salary of the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority President James Hartung. While the vast majority of the taxpayers may not have voiced opinions on the salary, you might wish to read the newspaper opinion Hartung's Gravy Train that was published by the daily newspaper in Toledo, Ohio. At least one taxpayer has expressed concerned as can be read in the "Letters to the Editor" column of the newspaper that you may read here.
This is not the first time the salary issue has been raised. For example, I found one article on the internet that goes back to August 17, 2000, and another article from 2005, and a some-what related side story (Update as of September 29, 2013: all three of the links to those cited references no longer work.)
So, dear readers, do you have an opinion on this issue? If so, I would appreciate reading your comments here.
As a side note: James Hartung telephoned me twice last fall right after I had made this comment
"How can I get Ben Konop or anyone else to put the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority and its Toledo Express Airport operations under the same microscope as is the Lucas County Improvement Corporation? The Toledo Express Airport operation has been sadly lacking for many, many years. For the amount of public funds involved with the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority and the airport, there ought to be far more accountability, efficiency, effectiveness, and results. Decades have passed with little or no noticeable improvement."
as a postscript to the October 24 Roland Hansen Commentary in which the main subject was Lucas County Commissioner Ben Konop and the Lucas County Improvement Corporation. Because I was not at home at the time of the calls, Mr Hartung left messages on my answering machine. Mr. Hartung had asked that I call his office to make an appointment with him and his "airport director" to discuss my concerns, thoughts, and ideas.
Given the fact that he is the highly paid CEO and that he has a well-paid 'Director of Airports' and a whole slew of paid staff to do the professional work, I found it interesting that he wanted me to be a volunteer to aid the paid staff in doing their jobs! Sheesh, he didn't even offer a consultant fee. lol
Incidentally, I have retained copies of those voice messages for posterity.