Fredonia businessman Ron Johnson, the Democratic and Independence endorsed candidate for county executive, called for a return to true leadership in the executive's office this fall. Johnson said he is committed to partnering with labor to maximize employee effectiveness and to raise customer service to new levels of excellence. Johnson told those attending the Dunkirk Democratic Committee picnic on Wednesday that Chautauqua County has been on the wrong path for the last seven years.
"Our county has over 7,000 fewer jobs than it did seven years ago. We have an underlying current of distrust between the current administration and county workers. There has been nothing but discord between labor and this administration, which has resulted in unsuccessful contract talks with the county's largest labor organization," Johnson said. "We must change the culture in county government by regaining the trust of workers and taxpayers. These stakeholders need to know that the county is headed in the right direction and they deserve better than what has been dished up by the current administration."
"If my opponent is elected, we are going to see the same type of government that we have seen over the past few years with politics and personal agendas first. I know that because that is exactly what we have seen with his record. County employees and county taxpayers want a leader who will get the county moving again. This means working with the unions to negotiate fair and reasonable contracts and to get both union and management employees to work closely to solve the challenges before us," Johnson said.
"When you elect me as your next county executive, I immediately will start working to end the labor strife and find a way to partner with our unions so we can focus on what is needed most in this county - living-wage jobs," Johnson added. "We need development sites that are ready for construction to begin or sites that have been renovated and are ready for re-use. My expertise as a private business owner can help us make a case for new business development in Chautauqua County," Johnson said.
Johnson is the owner and operator of Johnson Adult Homes in Fredonia. He was the lead developer of Fredonia Place and has turned around five different assisted-living facilities in New York and Florida. Johnson is a combat veteran of the Vietnam conflict, former Pomfret Town Justice and a retired Chautauqua County Deputy Sheriff.