Dayton Mayor and Democratic gubernatorial candidate Nan Whaley released the following statement after it was uncovered that the Ohio Department of Commerce hired a felon to score medical marijuana cultivator applications:
“This is no way to start out a brand-new industry and department in our state. Such a gross oversight undermines any confidence Ohioans would have had in the system. And it further proves that we need an effective, fair and competent leader in the Governor’s Office.
“There are suffering and chronically-ill Ohioans counting on this program to provide compassionate care and to ease their pain. This is a grave misstep and total disappointment as our state moves to implement a program supported by the vast majority of Ohioans.
“The sheer inequity and double standard here should be lost on no one. A Department of Commerce contractor with a felony was able to get off on probation and later secure a $150,000 government contract. While there are thousands of Ohioans who go to jail for similar offenses and are forced to check a box for the rest of their lives, which often disqualifies them from employment. Ohioans are sick and tired of there being two sets of rules in this state – one for the powerful in Columbus and one for everyone else.”