LIMA — Allen County Commissioner Greg Sneary may have a competitor in the upcoming November election in Ned Bushong, a write-in candidate for commissioner who ran for Lima mayor more than a decade ago.
Bushong’s latest political actions have included organizing protests against the hikes in the cost of cable television, which he calls the “Cable TV War.” This past spring, he personally called out Mayor David Berger and Allen County Commissioner Cory Noonan for avoiding the issue, and he threatened a recall against the elected officials.
This November, he may have the chance to oust Noonan’s colleague — long-time commissioner Greg Sneary — if Allen County residents write-in Bushong’s name on the ballot.
“My platform I guess is essentially to bring the government back to the people,” Bushong said. “One thing I have really learned with the Cable TV War thing is the government is just not accountable to the people. You can’t have a representative democracy if the political class ignores the people.”
Bushong said he plans on using the position as a way to highlight solutions to national issues affecting local people. Examples include decreasing property taxes, especially for farmers, and increasing social security benefits for seniors.
Over the next few months, he said is looking to visit senior and agriculture groups in the towns and villages outside of Lima to raise awareness of his candidacy.
“All I can do is start a conversation about all of these issues and use my office to get things rolling in the right direction. As a private citizen, I haven’t been able to scratch the surface,” Bushong said.
Sneary was unopposed in the May primary and, until Bushong filed with the Allen County Board of Elections this part Thursday, was unopposed in the November election.
“If people re-elect the commissioners they have, they can constantly look forward to tax increases. That is the history of what we got. It’s a money grab from the government, and there’s no sign of that letting up. They lost the sales tax increase so they went and raised fees without asking anybody. It’s never going to quit,” Bushong said in reference to a recent hike in license sticker fees to pay for infrastructure improvements.
Two public hearings for the increases were advertised as required by law by commissioners. Neither meetings were heavily-attended by the public.
Bushong is not associated with any political party. He said he quit them 10 years ago when he realized they’re roughly the same thing.
“Republicans are just watered down liberals anymore,” he said.
The Allen County Board of Elections confirmed Bushong filed to run for commissioner last week, but the county department still needs to certify his write-in candidacy papers before he’s officially eligible to run against Sneary.
Reach Josh Ellerbrock at 567-242-0398.