for Summit County Council District 1
Dear Family, Friends and Supporters,
I would like to invite you to join me on a journey, and I humbly ask for your help and support.
Over the past several years, there have been some positive accomplishments and developments in our community, but there are very troubling issues as well. During my previous tenure as President of Council, I helped lead us in a new direction toward fiscal responsibility and transparency. When I left office, the city had more than $2 million in surplus funds and was just a few years away from retiring all of the debt taken on when we built the recreation center and city hall. We also have healthy retail activity, but there has been a significant decline in commercial, light industrial, and industrial presence. The loss of these healthy revenue streams has increased the burden on you and me, as well as our elected officials when compared to other communities of similar size, income, and other demographics, both here in Summit County as well as in adjacent counties. Our elected officials are entrenched in their approach to managing the affairs of our community, and I care so deeply for our community. My journey will be to serve you on County Council, where I hope to contribute
at the regional level, sharing my experience and relationship building, and leadership skills to help improve our County government.
It is my sincere hope that I can help our community thrive in Northeast Ohio.
Please contact your Board of Elections to request your Vote by Mail ballot. If anyone does not have a printer, I can get you an absentee request form—I have plenty! Please remember, you must have your ballot postmarked by April 27th or drop off at the Board of Elections on the 28th.
TRUNK OR TREAT - 10/21/17
OHIO WIZARD OF OZ FESTIVAL - 9/23/17
Proven Leadership Delivering Results for Our Community
Hi, I'm Rita Darrow—I’m running to serve Summit County Council District 1. You can count on me to focus on the issues in our community that affect our citizens and businesses. I’ve always been very active in our communities since settling in the city of Macedonia. I’ve raised my children here—both are Nordonia Hills graduates, both graduated with High Honors, both attended Bowling Green State University. My daughter Brooke graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Criminal Justice, while my son Luke is a Junior and is seeking a Bachelor’s Degree in Sports Management.
My family are active members of Our Lady of Guadalupe Parish, located in Macedonia, where you can always find me volunteering at events sponsored by our Parish Church. I am also a proud member of the Federated Women of Summit County, where I serve as Third Vice President and am active at all sponsored events and meetings.
You can always count on me to represent YOUR interests, not special interests.
As a former Council Member and past President of Macedonia City Council, I learned how to navigate government and get things done by working well with people and building trust.
During my term as Council President, we passed over 300 legislative items with more than 90% of them passed unanimously. I am always willing to listen to concerns and suggestions and have proven my ability to solve problems and act on good ideas through effective legislation. I have the passion and experience to represent you with Honesty, Integrity, and Vision.
My family has been involved in public service for many years. I was raised with the idea that serving my community was not an obligation, but a privilege.
As President of Macedonia City Council, I helped deliver many improvements to our City and our City Government. We were headed in the wrong direction financially, spending too much on servicing debt and spending on things that didn't add value. Our positive results were a direct result of guiding Council to altering fiscal policy over several years, turning around our spending trends—spending too much in the wrong places and spending on the things that didn't directly improve the quality and delivery of the services that benefitted our residents. Some notable accomplishments from improving our financial situation:
After five years of freezes and cutbacks, we restored the staffing of our safety forces (Police AND Fire/Rescue) to pre-2008 levels; we also implemented a program for modernizing and upgrading our police and fire vehicles and equipment.
The City debt was paid off; tax rates were reduced by ¼%; the City went from deficit spending to a 10% surplus.
Employees began receiving pay increases again after a 3-year freeze.
A City roads program was started by evaluating every street in the City, and we got budgeting underway for fixing a decade of decay.
More than $200 million in State and Federal funding was obtained for a variety of City improvements, from major interstates to playground equipment in our parks.
Through my leadership, Council focused on economic development resulting in hundreds of new jobs, new housing, new retail, new assisted living facilities, and retaining several large manufacturers that were considering relocation.
I am honored to receive the following endorsements. Thank you for your trust in me.
First and most importantly, we (your elected officials) need to be accountable to YOU, our taxpayers. An elected office really is a sacred trust, not a path to personal financial gain or a tool to help out friends and family. This means we need to be fiscally responsible and completely transparent in how we conduct business. You have a right to know how we are spending your money, who we are spending it with, and be confident that the decision making process is above board.
We need to be sure that the services being delivered correctly and that they are the best value for the tax dollars being spent.
We need to foster the growth of jobs and businesses. To attract new businesses, our communities need to be attractive to them and provide the services and infrastructure they need to succeed in today's rapidly changing environment.
We also need to ensure we retain the larger employers in our community—assisting them in expansion, keeping their taxes low and collaborating with County, State, and Federal officials to identify and take advantage of available programs to aid in their growth. We can assist in finding locations, land acquisition, relocation within and even the use of technology with the resources and skills we already have in our community.
We can lead the way on the issue of drug addiction—specifically heroin and overdoses—by keeping this issue highly visible through continuous communication and education. This needs our attention, as it is destroying too many families and killing our young people. Our police, first responders, and educators need to be equipped and trained to deal with the current epidemic.
I will be active throughout our community, working with our citizens, other leaders in our District, and our businesses. We must all work together to ensure a bright future!
You can count on me to tirelessly work for our Residents and our Community !
My campaign is grass roots, getting to know people one at a time and in small groups—NO special interests, just Just me and you, the citizens of our District. Get to know me and you will like me!
With your support, we can make a difference in our community.
There are many ways to help out, from going door-to-door to hosting a meet & greet with your friends and neighbors. Getting active in a grass roots campaign is very rewarding! I always need help at the polls on election day and at fundraisers—both are fun! I especially need help spreading the word online. If you would like to meet me or have a willingness to help out, just fill out the form below. I'm happy to drop by, meet you, and answer any questions you might have face-to-face. Also, if you would like to donate to my campaign, you can do so right here, just click on the donate button.
BECOME A VOLUNTEER
We need your help! There are many ways to help my campaign, from going door-to-door to hosting a meet & greet or even representing me on voting day at the polls. We also need help with social media and taking care of this website. Won't you please consider helping out?
MAKE A DONATION
I desperately need financial help to succeed. I am running against well funded opponents who have resources that far exceed mine. I am a grass roots candidate, and with YOUR support I can bring energy and more new ideas to our community.
HOST A HOUSE PARTY
I believe that direct contact is the best way for you, your friends, and your neighbors to get to know me. Host a meet & greet gathering at your home so I can hear your concerns and you can hear about my ideas for our future.