JEWETT - A fundraiser was held for State Rep. Andy Thompson (R-Marietta) at Ja-Lin's Bar in Jewett on Thursday. Thompson represents the 95th District, which includes Harrison, Carroll and Noble counties, in addition to parts of Belmont and Washington counties. He is up for re-election in November.
Community leaders and officials including members of village councils throughout Harrison County, Judges Shawn Hervey, Mark Beetham and Matthew Puskarich, prosecuting attorney Michael Washington and Barry Momyer, Vice Chairman of the Harrison County Republican Party, attended the fundraiser.
"This is an event to get acquainted with some of the folks in the county," Thompson explained.
Also in attendance was State Treasurer Josh Mandel, who explained that he spends a lot of time in Eastern Ohio. Both politicians are advocates for exploration in the gas and oil industry, and both expressed the hope that this part of the state will lead Ohio to economic recovery.
"The world is talking about Harrison, Belmont, Noble and Carroll counties," Thompson said. "This is just the beginning, more infrastructure will be built."
Thompson went on to say he is honored to represent this area of Ohio. He recently visited the Harrison County Fair, where he purchased a pen of market rabbits at the 4-H sale. He then donated the animals back to the 4-H member.
Thompson spoke to the fundraiser's crowd briefly.
He stated that the addition of gas and oil industry jobs in Harrison County and other local counties has and will continue to allow people, especially youth, to obtain quality jobs without leaving home.
"You're the people who are going to help other counties make good choices, help plan for the long term, and also welcome in these companies who want to invest in the long term," Thompson said to the crowd. "They're not going to be here just for two years or three years, many of them will be here for 10, 15, 25, 50 years, and we're going to reap the benefits here if we get the policies right."
Before and after his speech, Thompson, along with Mandel, spent most of the event mingling with attendees on an individual level, seeking input on policy development.
Lately, Thompson has been meeting with the Ohio Department of Transportation and a number of local developers concerning the Junction at Jewett project, a $100 million transload facility being considered along nearly 700 acres outside of the village.
As the fundraiser was winding down, Thompson remarked that he was pleased by the turnout, and happy that Mandel was able to attend.
"I'm encouraged by the support and optimism in the room," he said.
Thompson also complimented Ja-Lin's.
"I can't complain, there's great food."
Warner may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.