(Portsmouth, Ohio) If you sent an email to Scioto County, Ohio officials and didn’t get a response, computer security software may be to blame. County Commissioner Bryan Davis said that heightened electronic security had the unfortunate side effect of blocking many emails. SCDN raised the issue with the Commissioners after Portsmouth City Councilman Sean Dunne complained that commissioners did not answer his emails.
Dunne called for a state review of the county’s property tax collection methods at the September 14, Portsmouth City Council meeting. Portsmouth Mayor Kevin E. Johnson preferred another approach. “Have we told them about our plight? I think if we could avoid the entanglement of going to the state. If we could go to the county first and reach out to them. I’ve always found the county easy to work with and very accommodating.”
Dunne said his experience with the county differed from Johnson’s. He said his last two emails to the county had gone unanswered. “I just don’t get replies from them.”
Commissioner Davis did not respond favorably to Dunne’s criticism about tax collection, saying, “I understand there was a statement made. We need to go to the state auditor and have the state auditor come down. You know what? Do it!”
However, Davis said when he heard Dunne’s email complaints, he investigated. “When I saw that I went and looked for those emails. I couldn’t find them.” The Commissioner said the issue is upgraded security software. “We’ve had some email issues. There are some issues with attachments because of cybersecurity. There are just certain things our system is not allowing through because the courthouse is a voting spot. My goodness.”
He asked the councilman to resend the emails in question. “If he’s watching and would like to resend them … as a matter of fact, I’ll reach out to him. We’ve had some email issues. I apologize to Councilman Dunne.”
This could be a bright spot for the First Ward Councilman. Dunne’s ordinance to decriminalize marijuana in Portsmouth was defeated on Monday. Initially, there was strong support for the measure in council but some changed their mind after talking with constituents and law enforcement.