Belinky receives recommendation from Mahoning Co. Bar Assoc. - News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Belinky receives a recommendation by the Mahoning County Bar Association

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio - One month before the Primary Elections and Former Mahoning County Probate Judge Mark Belinky's name remains on the May ballot - running for the same position he recently resigned amidst investigations of alleged corruption.

Despite the allegations, he's "recommended" for the position by the Mahoning County Bar Association.

At a Monday night candidates-and-issues forum, opponents Susan Maruca and Chris Sammarone both address the bar associations recent recommendations for the position.

"Look I took on Mark Belinky, I get it, I get it. Less than 200 voted and yeah they're not okay with me but that's okay. It's the right thing to do." said Maruca who did not receive a recommendation by the bar association, although she is the Democratic Party's endorsed candidate.

"I also took on an incumbent judge when I filed to run for this position, and the bar association did recommend me," said Sammarone.

Whose "recommended" by the bar association and whose not has gained recent attention after the bar association "recommended" Mark Belinky for the position of probate judge- the same position he resigned from, after state investigators raided his office and home in early February.

"This is the same system that is used every year, and no one lodged a complaint as to how it's done, why it's done," said Mahoning County Bar Association President Edward Hartwig. "And simple fact that certain results came in and certain people are upset with the results, I mean we understand that but this is simply a poll of the bar members."

Belinky was first appointed to the position of probate judge in 2007 to serve out the remaining term of retiring judge Tim Maloney. He was elected to a six year term in 2008 and was recently running for another term against Maruca and Sammarone.

"There's no screening, there's no interview, there's no application, there's no resume submission. It's the only endorsement that I've gone through without any of those elements," said Maruca of the bar associations process of determining recommendations.

"When I ran for Court of Appeals I was not recommended and I believe that decision by our bar and the members of our bar was based on the fact that I wasn't experienced, and I was upset when I wasn't recommended and I was a little bitter but I didn't criticize the bar," said Sammarone.

Hartwig says, a recommendation of a candidate is in no way an endorsement. He also points out that as of now Belikny has not been charged with any crime.




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