Toledoans react to mayor’s Germany trip - WNEM TV 5

Toledoans react to mayor’s Germany trip

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Mayor Bell in India Mayor Bell in India
TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) -

Toledo Mayor Mike Bell has already been to China and India in hopes of creating relationships to bring new investment and jobs to the area, and now he's leading a Glass City delegation to Germany.

The trip will be based out of Delmenhorst, Toledo's Sister City in Germany.

The debate back home is whether it's a worthy endeavor, or a taxpayer-funded vacation. Kevin Scanlon says it's hard to criticize at this point.

"I think it's worth a chance, anything to help the economy," he said. "If it brings future revenue it might be worth it."

Tracy McGee says the trip will ultimately be judged years down the road.

"I grew up in Fremont, and Toledo was a town everybody came to, and I'd like to see it be the diamond it once was, so I don't think it's a bad thing," McGee said. "I just hope something comes out of it."

Councilman Joe McNamara is critical of the mayor's trip, calling it a vacation paid for by taxpayer money, but Councilman Rob Ludeman disagrees.

"I've been to Europe representing the city, both in Germany and Spain. It's nowhere near a vacation. You're busy from dawn to dusk. You're meeting with people and creating relationships that hopefully will be fruitful," Ludeman said.

On Thursday and Friday, the delegation will be attending the Hannover Industrial Fair, an event Ludeman says the mayor should be at.

"When you look at what we have in Toledo with our engineering, the solar capacity and our auto industry, they all fit together with what he'll be talking about."

The mayor is joined on the trip by three of his top city staffers: Deputy Mayor Paul Syring, Finance Director Patrick McLean and Public Information Officer Jen Sorgenfrei.  

Copyright 2013 Toledo News Now. All rights reserved.

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