In April, Maureen Ruhl announced via Facebook she is running a write-in campaign for Renovo Borough Council in the May 18 primary election.
Ruhl is well known in the area as someone who isn’t afraid to speak out on tough issues. She became concerned when she heard area residents talking about Renovo Borough Council holding alleged ‘secret meetings’ behind closed doors, why Corporal Jefferies continues to remain on paid administrative leave and the mishandling of the 14th Street row home containing units declared unfit for habitation; the argument that Renovo Borough abused its discretion and erred in issuing a building condemnation notice.
The members of Renovo Borough Council are elected by the people, to represent and inform the people of vital situations surrounding the community’s growth and overall protection. By providing misleading information or withholding information from the community, it creates a breach of trust. When you lose trust in those representing the community; it creates great doubt that they have the community’s best interest at heart.
Since Ruhl has learned she will be on the ballot in November and she’s not taking that responsibility lightly. Ruhl is true to her word. She has already started to tackle some of the obstacles presented to her by community members.
Ruhl has requested information from the Renovo Borough Council secretary Marsha Davis under Pennsylvania’s Right to Know Law (RTKL) seeking answers to why Corporal Jefferies remains on paid administrative leave, Officer Foley’s current status as an officer, and auditing Renovo Borough grants from January 2014 to the current date.
Under the Right to Know Law, all government records in the possession of a Commonwealth or Local Agency are presumed to be accessible by the public. So Ruhl is well within her rights as a resident and taxpayer to seek such information.
Since it has been reported Corporal Jefferies and K-9 Jordan’s time has come to an official end in Renovo. K-9 Jordan, who served the community of Renovo for the past 3 years, has received his retirement paperwork and will remain with the Jefferies family. There is no further information as to Corporal Jefferies’s future career plans.
However, her investigation into grant money received by Renovo Borough is ruffling some feathers. Ruhl’s friends and family are now being targeted. Ruhl’s friend is a mandated reporter. She was tagged in a post on Facebook by a young man that had a legitimate concern that a child may have been placed in danger. That ‘tag’ created controversy blaming Ruhl’s friend as being involved in her investigation of grant money, which is false information. False statements or defamation of one’s character can have legal ramifications.
‘Defamation is typically defined as a false statement someone makes about you, which they publish as a statement of fact, and which harms your personal and/or professional reputation or causes you other damages, including financial loss and emotional distress.’
Ruhl responded, ‘My friend is a mandated reporter. His concerns were real and child endangerment is no joke. After almost 30 years in the field of child advocacy and getting laws re-written to protect children from abuse, I highly doubt my friend has the time to be a puppet master, especially mine! No one is pulling my strings, I answer only to the concerned citizens of Renovo who have been silenced far too long. Our community is filled with talented and dedicated people who wish to participate in the democratic process. They want their voices heard, concerns addressed and relegated with compassion.’
Ruhl plans to have an open communication system with the community. She is currently scheduling an open Q & A format where taxpayers can come to her with their questions and concerns. The event will be streamed live on Facebook and YouTube. Ruhl has stated multiple times she would be more than happy to host a Q & A debate with current Renovo Borough Council members. Her goal is to get answers that only those within the Renovo Borough Council seem to know.
Ruhl said, ‘I invite the Renovo Borough Council to attend an open Q & A session with the public. When residents attend the regularly scheduled meetings, they are often dismissed and answers to questions are never responded to as promised. The “executive sessions” where council members discuss topics, without the verification of minutes or notes taken, have become a substitution for real community dialog. Our citizens deserve answers to their questions about police coverage. Many of the current Council members ran on the issue of improving police services to the community. However, they have not brought resolution to this ongoing problem. They in fact purchased a drug dog and now he is retired. Meanwhile, the drug abuse is climbing and has become uncomfortably visible, all around town. There should be mandated and random drug testing instituted by the Renovo Borough for their employees, after accidents and Renovo Council members. Most insurance companies require this step because it ensures public safety.’
Anyone with questions or concerns are encouraged to contact Ruhl at: 131 8th St Renovo, Pa 17764
Ruhl is now retired but she is a former banker, businesswoman, child advocate, and author of Frozen Tears. She donates her time to various organizations and charities in the community. She is dedicated to making a difference in hopes of creating a better tomorrow for future generations to come.
Article by: Donna Kshir