Residents often comment about the ongoing “Lundy Listens” town hall meetings I hold throughout the district. Many say they appreciate having the opportunity to voice their concerns. Others wonder why I am holding the meetings in the first place.
As a former investigative reporter, I have always believed that government should be open and transparent with the public. I also found that with many levels of government, there is often confusion about what some elected officials do. To this day, I still have people write or call me thinking that I am their congressman. I regularly receive letters about congressional or federal issues. Without question federal issues receive a lot more media attention than our state issues.
The “Lundy Listens” town halls provide an opportunity to inform residents that I serve at the state level in Columbus. Most importantly, residents can learn about state legislation and state bills impacting Ohio. I do, however, help residents reach the right contact in Washington if they have a federal issue of concern and don’t know where to turn. Yes, it can be confusing because many issues impact the state and federal level.
I often remind writers to my office that I don’t have a vote in Washington on federal issues, but I do have a vote in Columbus on state issues. This is all part of the education process and keeping residents informed about our respective responsibilities and votes. By gathering feedback at the town hall meetings, I can take the concerns and questions of residents to Columbus to shape legislation before us. This feedback also plays a critical role in the decision made when it comes time to vote.
I believe that those of us in public service should never forget that we work for you. I also strongly believe that it is important to be accessible to you and to be a good listener. So, I hope if you haven’t attended a recent meeting, you will. If you have, thank you and I hope to see you again soon. If you can’t attend a meeting, please call or email me.
When you have questions or concerns about state issues, you can always reach me at 614-644-5076 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org. Please make plans to attend our next “Lundy Listens” on Thursday, Aug. 16. It will start at 6 p.m. at The Elyria Public Library on West River Road in Elyria. I am here to listen to you and to serve you in Columbus.