Germantown Hills resident to run for trustee in spring

Staff Writer
Woodford Times

Many Germantown Hills residents disapproved of the village board's decision to fire clerk Ann Sasso Nov. 5 during a special meeting.

Marty Clinch, Germantown Hills economic development committee member and IDOT manager, included himself in the debate.

“I don't understand how a seasoned employee, the heart and soul of the board, can be thrown out here to the wind,” Clinch said. “I don't understand why you guys can't sit down and work it out.”

“Think about what you're doing to the community.”

Germantown Hills resident Marvin Johnson served on the board as a trustee and mayor for two years, getting to know Sasso throughout that time. He agreed with Clinch's comments.

“Ann was dedicated to this village and made sacrifices to attend every function,” Johnson said.

Other residents to speak included chartered financial consultant Paul Herzog and Jack Gaetz, a 50-year resident who served as mayor for four years.

“What is really strange to me is I have not heard one bad thing about Ann from anyone else but the board,” Gaetz said.

A lot of shouting from the villagers also included statements such as, “Better pack your bags, boys,” which they said in reference to the fact that they would not re-elect most of the current board members.

However, Clinch went a step further than the rest when he announced his plans for the spring 2013.

“I'm running for board,” he said. “I've already decided.”

Clinch said his goals if elected to the board include improving the community through economic development; cutting down on lawyer fees; creating a peaceful work environment among the board members; getting less negative media attention; and adding more lights to the area parks.

He said he would achieve his fourth goal by not acting in a manner similar to the current board in handling personnel issues.

“We don't want to end up on the front page all the time for things like this,” Clinch said about Sasso getting fired. “We want to get on the front page because we did something positive.”

IDOT goes through a lengthy process in deciding whether or not to fire someone, according to Clinch. The process begins with a verbal warning. If the employee continues the same behavior, it is followed up with a written warning.

As for economic development, Clinch said he would start with the lack of a grocery store in Germantown Hills.

“Everybody around us says, 'You don't have a grocery store as big as your community is?'” Clinch said.

Clinch said he would initiate partnerships with the many organizations out there willing to give grants or loan money for such an expense.

“I want to reach out to the people that want to help,” Clinch said.

In bringing more light to the parks, Clinch said he hopes to attract more people to Germantown Hills.

“Let's make our community a little more user-friendly,” he said.

Clinch ran for two governmental positions in his lifetime; he ran for Woodford County Board, of which year he could not recall, and he ran for township trustee in the 1980s. He lost both of these races.

However, Clinch said he feels qualified in that he involved himself in government campaigns since the 1970s.

“Back when I was a (rebellious) hippy and McGovern was running against Nixon, I ran some precincts, (dropped) literature, (made) phone calls...,” he said.

In addition, he helped build the park on Woodland Knolls Road as an appointed member of the Germantown Hills planning commission.

Clinch, as well as other candidates, cannot file a disclosure form to run for trustee until Dec. 17. The deadline to turn in the paperwork is Dec. 21.

Call the Germantown Hills village office at 383-2209 or email gtown@mtco.com for more information about running for village board in the spring 2013 election.