Monday, December 27, 2004

So Who Is Bill Moss?

I don't know how I missed it before today, but I just learned that Columbus's own Bill Moss and his wife are the lead plaintiffs in the suit filed challenging the Ohio election results.

I'm sure many of you outside Ohio are interested in learning more about Mr. Moss.

Mr. Moss was a "colorful" 5-term member of the Columbus School Board before he lost in the 2003 election. Of course he lost because Columbus Democrats and Republicans worked together to endorse a team of 4 candidates (2 Republicans, 2 Democrats) designed specifically to get him off the board. Who says we Ohioans can't work together for a common cause?

To get a better picture of some of Mr. Moss's exploits, take a look at these blurbs pulled from the archives of the Columbus Dispatch using the search term "bill moss school board".

From Aug 4, 1999

He has boycotted special meetings -- even shunned a retreat designed to smooth over disagreements among the Columbus Board of Education members -- but now board member Bill Moss' absences are hitting him in the wallet.

Moss protested at a board meeting last night that his $260 monthly board check was withheld by interim Treasurer Jerry Buccilla's office.

From Dec 16, 1999

Bill Moss came out of the race for Columbus Board of Education a winner -- and apparently so did his car.

Moss charged his campaign $2,740 for what appears to be a thorough overhaul of his 1979 Buick LeSabre, according to campaign disclosures on file with the Franklin County Board of Elections.

From Dec 22, 1999
The topic of docked pay proved disruptive, yet familiar, to board President Mary Jo Kilroy, whose eight-year tenure ended with the expected well-wishes, presents and a plaque, as well as a shouting match with board member Bill Moss.

From July 18, 2001

As the Columbus Board of Education signed its new superintendent to a four-year contract last night, camouflage-clad Bill Moss continued the commando-type political assault that has kept him entrenched in the familiar role of lone dissenter.

From Feb 7, 2003

Disrupting a public meeting likely will get a person tossed out of the room. But what happens when that troublemaker is one of the elected officials?

Columbus Board of Education member Bill Moss effectively shut down a school board meeting on Tuesday by pounding a shoe on the table and shouting for about 25 minutes.

From Feb 9, 2003

Columbus' version of the mad shoe-bomber -- the mad shoe-banger -- struck Tuesday.

Bill Moss' technique varied -- one hand, both hands. But give the senior member of the Columbus Board of Education credit for strong arms and good lungs.

From Oct 13, 2003

Attacking a political newcomer with racially charged comments, Columbus Board of Education member Bill Moss said Terry Boyd is "the great black hope'' and a tool of the white "plantation owners.''

"They've got to come out and find a black man who could be used as a tool,'' Moss said in an interview. "Whenever the establishment -- the plantation bosses -- want to get rid of Bill Moss, they always get together.''

From Oct. 22, 2003

Bill Moss doesn't apologize for being Bill Moss.

Whether he's thoughtfully asking Superintendent Gene Harris about the qualifications of district math teachers or pounding a shoe on the board table while chanting "Look at the criminals!'' Moss says he always has the interests of taxpayers in mind.

From Nov 5, 2003

Thanks to the determined leadership of Board President Stephanie Hightower, Terry Boyd defeated Bill Moss, whose outrageous sideshows over the years have done major damage to the district's credibility and contributed to flight from the system by the very types of families the district needs to retain
From May 4, 2004:

Though the court ordered him several times to pay nearly $12,000 to a retiring teacher, former Columbus Board of Education member Bill Moss said yesterday that he should not have to pay.

Moss said time he spent in a Franklin County jail cell for contempt of court in 1993 should be enough to pay a civil judgment against him by now-retired Judge Tommy L. Thompson in 1990.

I'm sure there are more, but this gives you an idea of the man behind the lawsuit.