Newly Elected City Council Members Took the Oath of Office


Tipp City, Ohio – Monday, January 2, 2012, at the first City Council Meeting for 2012, Dee Gillis and John Kessler were sworn in for another four years and being sworn in for his first term was Mike McDermott. All three were elected in November to the Tipp City Council and will serve 4 year terms.

City Council voted to elect John Kessler as Council President and Dee Gillis as Mayor. Both President and Mayor are two year terms.

Images graciously provided by the Tippecanoe Gazette



  1. This article is exactly what is expected with an online paper owned by Mike McDermott and with what appears to be a puppet for an editor. No substance to the article. No mention of Mr. Brownlee and his presentation of how unfit John Kessler is to be President of City Council. Mike McDermott had a chance to have his first vote on city council to be truly meaningful but wasted that chance to do what he thought would advance his career politically not what is right for the city of Tipp City. I have never met John Kessler. What I do know is that he could not run a business called the Independent Voice, he is in bankruptcy protection, he collected taxes on behave of the city of Tipp City from his employees and JOHN KESSLER NEVER PAIN THE TAXES HE OWNS TO THE CITY OF TIPP CITY. This has gone on for three years. Mr. Kessler has been convicted of drug possession and multiple drunk driving offenses. John Kessler had an opportunity to speak and chose to be silent at the meeting about these accusations.

    • Clearly you didn't read the article on the FRONT PAGE of the Troy Daily News where John Kessler replied to all of the accusations against him.

    • “I have never met John Kessler”

      That’s all I had to read right there.  If you would take the time to meet people and get to know them before throwing accusations around then you would understand why this man was voted into the position of President of Council.  What you fail to recognize is that all seven of these people whether you voted for them or not were elected by the city of Tipp City, so obviously someone wants them there.

      I think it’s ridiculous how childish some people in this city are acting over our elected officials.  

  2. Mr. Hale, Ms. Gillis and Mr. McDermott must think that this is the best person to represent the City of Tipp City as President of Council. The President of Council interacts with potential businesses, tax payers and visitors. They will look at him and think he has no respect for the law and does not even have the respect to pay taxes he owns to Tipp City. He recently voted to increase the tax rate in Tipp City in full knowledge he owes taxes to the city of Tipp City. It would seem that Mr. Hale, Ms. Gillis and Mr. McDermott have thing against Mr. Gibson. If you ever watch the council meeting on cable it is quit obvious that Mr. Hale does by his body language any time Mr. Gibson speaks at a council meeting. Mr. Hale was not eligible to continue as President of council. Ms. Gillis and Mr. McDermott could have been elected as President of council. Now we are stuck for two years with John Kessler as President of City Council and he continues to refuse to pay his taxes to the City. I stay we throw all seven of them out of office and start all over. I here there is already a recall petition being started to get rid of John Kessler.

  3. I'm guessing the person is willing to run in their place….if this is Councilman Gibson…if it is Mr. Brownlee….well, you have to be prepared to wear some mud if you wish to sling it, sir.

  4. Mr Kessler would help anyone who needed it and worked to do his best for the people of this city. all of them whether they deserve it or not.

  5. John has worked to rectify the problems he was left with at the paper is still continuing to do so.
    In a nut shell the John Kessler who I've known for many years is a good and honest, hard working ,fair and selfless man. He has always been very civic minded.

  6. I do not agree with John on a lot of political issues . That being said I do not have to agree with John to like him on a personal level.. I do not support a recall effort .For those who wish to recall him, Your opportunity to be rid of Mr. Kessler passed just 2 months ago. I believe the likelihood of a successful recall to be slim and will only cost the taxpayer election cost. John was elected president by the majority of council that was elected by the people.. If you are unhappy with the makeup of your council find a candidate you can support get the word out get involved in his/her campaign..Until then show up at the council meetings let your voice be heard..A lot of the people that come to council meetings are there to secure your money for their cause. They are able to do so because of your absence.
    Bryan Budding

  7. Whether or not someone is having financial issues (in a recession, mind you) has no bearing on their competency to lead city council. Not everyone who holds public office buys their position by using their personal wealth to launch a massive campaign and influence people.

  8. Hey there guys!
    May I interject a couple of notes from the Publisher this fine Thursday afternoon in Tipp City?

    I too disagree with John Kessler on a number of issues that he is well aware of.  I expect that in the coming 4 years he and I will disagree on critical items.

    Still knowing this,  I find him to be a fair and civic minded person as well as someone that Tipp voters chose not once, but twice to serve them.
    Financial challenges are only temporary and do not speak directly of the man as much as his character. Being a resident of Tipp and the Downtown, I can rarely recall a parade, event or community need that John was not willing to organize or attend to.

    The selection process of Council President has never been an invitation for a mock(ery) election. The participants for the appointment number seven and four extended their vote of support in his leadership. Council President is essentially the leader of the Council meeting.. Calling it to order, calling the roll and moving to close. The President holds a gavel yet wields the same single vote as any of the other 6 members.

    As to the accusations made below that stoked this discussion, Mr. Kessler has shared that he has never been charged or convicted for drug offenses, DUI and is not under bankruptcy protection.

    If anyone has questions about any one of the votes that I cast as your new council member, I welcome your query. My silence on these comment areas and within this publication in general is a chance for me to not only focus more time on the people’s business but also allow your words to reflect who we are and why Tipp City is a fantastic place to live and work.

  9. Don’t worry Mr. McDermott.  Your vote on this issue will not be forgotten in 4 years when you are up for re-election.  That goes for Mr. Hale in 2 years. Mr. Kessler’s election is an embarrassment to the city.  One question for Mr. Kessler he won’t answer.  What did he do with the money he withheld from his employees that is owed to the city he represents?  Also, why hasn’t the city garnished his council wages for the back taxes? We’ll never get the answer either.

    • You do realize that President of Council is really just a figure head?  His main power will be to run the council meetings, that’s it.  I don’t understand why people are getting so worked up over this.

  10. I am truly disappointed – and not in just city council. I am disappointed in Mr Brownlee for not not bringing this issue to light BEFORE the elections — and I suspect he had this info then. I am disappointed in our city government — as Mr Kessler himself stated: No one from the federal government or TIPP CITY has come to be about the taxes owed (well, of course not — they re too busy going to court over useless sign issues that they cant win). I am disappointed in council members (and especially Mr McDermott who ran on ‘representing the people’) for electing Mr Kessler as President. This position along with Mayor (and Mrs Mayor, how did you justify this vote?) represent TC at every turn — with businesses who MIGHT think about coming to Tipp; with adjoining cities where we work side by side many times for the good of both cities.  What kind of confidence in our leaders does this  action demand?  None. 

    Mr Kessler may be — and probably is — a nice person.  But that does not give him a license to not pay his taxes like everyone else.  So his business failed (and I know the newspaper business is a tough one in this age of computers, TV news, etc) and I also understand that he was not the single owner of this business; however, the law is the law.  Doesnt make any difference if you are nice or not; doesnt make any difference if you are wealthy or poor; it is the LAW — pay your taxes.  Maybe this city that claims to be so broke should go after the money due from all sources.  (Wasnt too long ago the city ‘negotiated’ back taxes for parking spaces at the old Brubaker’s Market instead of going after all the money they were due.  Wasnt too long ago that the city negotiated with Mr Watson on taxes due –again, instead of going after badly needed money due.)  Wonder if our new attorney will recommend or discourage these kinds of actions???

    Mr McDermott, first action out of the box has disappointed me — and again we are seeing 4-3 votes — had truly hoped that was gonna change.   Am giving you some time to get your feet on the ground but I know you did lots of research prior to running; attended lots of meetings to get a good feel of how Tipp operates; served on several public committees to help Tipp get their priorities straight,etc — let’s hope you remember who voted for you and why.  

     As for Mrs Gillis and Mr Hale.  I dont believe you have a clue as to how hard many residents in this town are struggling to keep their homes and put food on the table and pay for their medications.  Your constant votes to add jobs, increase taxes, purchase consultants, pay for 4th of July fireworks, etc — is just another way of ignoring these people.   Every little expense cut adds up — oh, and paying a council person $1800 stipend for NOT taking the health insurance is ridiculous!  What is wrong with you people — maybe Foodtown will pay me $18 for shopping at their store even though I cant pay for my groceries — do you get it yet?????


    • I think Mr. Brownlee got exactly what he wanted.  He wanted to stir up this crazy mess for no reason what so ever.  Who cares who the President of Council is, it’s not like it’s a position with any true power.

      Mr. McDermott did what he thought was right and what he thought the people who voted for him would want him to do.  Unfortunately there is a very vocal minority who think otherwise.  But if I get a chance to then I’ll pat him on the back and remind him that there are more people in this City than the few who are posting on here.  

      The same goes for Mrs. Gillis and Mr. Hale.  Of course there are people struggling in this fine City, but there are people struggling EVERYWHERE.  Do you realize how good we have it in Tipp?  We’re lucky that we have people who even want to serve on Council for how cheaply they are paid.  Look around you at some other cities in this area and you’ll see how even though there are “people struggling” there too that their Council members are being paid much better.  We should be thanking them for not asking for more.  

      • Asking for more? Get your facts straight “People”, Kessler, Hale and  Gillis already get over $15,000 is stipend and health insurance. My guess is McDermott has fallen in line with these city staff rubber stamps.  This amount far exceeds any city or village council in Miami County or the region.

         Black and Budding receive $2,800 for stipend and not receiving health insurance.  

        Gibson receives only $1,000 for stipend and pays for his own health insurance.  

        Does that seem fair?  Three different levels of compensation on one council?  Every time the issue came up last year, Hale, Gillis and Kessler voted to keep their HIGH pay and benefits.  While Black, Budding and Gibson tried to make the salary and/or benefits equitable for all.

        Everyone will remember this action and the embarrassment this has and will bring the City.  

        Council President should be councils leader, bring leadership on issues, building consensus with council,  representing the city with other local elected officials.  Don’t use Mr. Hale’s time as President as an example of how this should be done.  It should be an example of how not to do the job,  Unfortunately council has decided to go down a rung instead of moving up a rung with this decision.

        We will not forget!

        • I do have the facts straight.  If you do a little research you will find that cities around us pay their council members much more than the $5000 each of our members get.  Not to mention better benefits.  

          The only reason Mr. Gibson denies his health insurance and stipend is because he is Mr. Richey Rich and can afford to do so.  You want to talk about people who are struggling and giving to the community when you want to cut down the very people who are working hard to make it better?  Not everyone has a law firm and can afford to be on council for basically nothing.  

          Let me ask you this question.  If you were on council how would you like to be compensated for the time and effort put into  representing this city?  

          Mr. Hale, Ms. Gillis, and Mr. Kessler should be commended for what they do for this city and not giving in to the vocal minority and working together, and trying to work with other Council members who refuse to work with them.

          • The fact in your response is flat out wrong.  Ask any one of Tipp’s council members what they make with benefits. I stand by my pay and benefit numbers. 3 levels of pay for this council. It is not $5000.00 each!!! Other cities do pay more then Black, Budding and Gibson are compensated and much less then Gillis, Kessler and I would guess what option McDermott chose.
            To answer your question to me: I believe there should be one amount of compensation for every council member as apposed to the 3 levels it currently has.  This council should find an educated compromise on what that amount should be.  I believe Nancy Bowman listed the compensation levels  of area councils in one of her articles. The information is out there.  A President of Council with half an ounce of leadership would have made this case already.  A President who will not pay his companies Tipp City withholding tax is not to be trusted to come up with this solution.

            Do you think it’s equitable that there are 3 different pay levels for today’s council?

          • Timing is everything.  Mr. Hale’s proposal was the exact time council had the income tax increase for capital improvements on the ballot.  Do you really think that was the right time to talk about raising councils pay from 1K to 5K.  Strategically that would have been a bad idea.  

            The time to settle this issue is now.  Unfortunately, Pres. Kessler’s city tax problems make him ineffective to make any deal within council.  He is not competent to deal with compensation when he will not settle his companies obligations to the city. 

          • But according to your logic that wouldn’t actually be raising Council’s pay. That would be cutting it.

          • I hope you see how ridulous you sound when you say the only reason Gibson doesn’t take the insurance because he’s Mr. Richie Rich.  Give the fellow some slack! Perhaps he’s doing this because it is the right thing to do! As for him being rich, if his house is any indication, he’s a lot less wealthy than Lovett, Beagle, Hale or even Budding.  Have you seen THIER houses!! Law firm or not, Gibson sounds like the small government fiscal conservative this town needs.  How the others got elected, AND how they chose the tax dodger Kessler as President is beyond the comprehension of MANY citizens.  Hopefiully this will all come to light.  Wait & see.

  11. It is very disappointing to read all of the childish
    allegations being brought up by Mr. Brownlee and Mr. Gibson in reference to
    Councilman Kessler’s tax issues. It is just as concerning to realize how
    misinformed and mislead the citizens of Tipp
    City are. The demise of the TGM
    Designs is a matter of public record.  

    The Tipp City
    Independent Voice was founded by journalist Matt Bayman and began
    publishing on Wednesday, February 2, 2005. Mr. Bayman was its proprietor,
    publisher, editor and business manager until January 2, 2007, when the
    controlling interest in the company was purchased by John E. Kessler, Tom
    Adkins and Matt Black to become TGM Designs. What most do not know is John is
    the only one making payments on these tax issues and now owes less than
    $3000.00. Nor has the city approached him on any tax issues. I don’t know how
    you can blame the failure of the paper on one person.

    I would also like
    to address the coward who only signed as “Unbelievalbe”  who calms he never met Councilman Kessler. I
    have know John since high school. Foremost, John has never been charged with a
    DUI or drug possession, false comments that I find slanderus and liable. Check
    your facts, go to public court records and while your doing so, check some of
    the others involved in this high school dispute, John has one traffic ticket.

    What I do know as fact is John, being a life long resident
    of Tipp City,
    is very concerned with the future of this great town. He understands that
    putting band aides on current problems only prolongs the inevitable. If he is
    doing such a poor job as a city councilman, why is it the citizens of Tipp
    City have asked him to serve a
    second term and the majority of the current council voted him as council
    president. Stop the mud slinging and whining over spilt milk, put your big girl
    panties on and start worrying about real city issues



  12. This all very sad.  Tipp has an already-poor reputation now, and it’s just gotten worse.  The reality of this situation is as follows.   First,  Tipp has a divided council and it has been such ever since the “evil 3” got elected in 2009.  Whether it was health insurance, budget cuts, or simply asking questions and keeping staff accountable, ever since Black Gibson and Budding got in, there has been a division on council that can only be described as HATRED.  The 4 HATED the 3 up to the 2011 election, and obviously McDermott replacing Lovett doesn’t change this.  The “evil 3” are smacked down at every chance, and even postings on this sorry excuse of a news report note this.  Even when confronted with Kessler’s tax problems, the 4 would rather have “one of their kind” in over Gibson (one of the “evil 3”).  This shows HOW MUCH they TRULY HATE the “evil 3”.  At least Gibson showers and shaves!  Kessler is just a scary-lookin’ dude, and HE’S going to be the face of Tipp City??? And the tax issue is very damning.  He didnt just fail to pay his OWN taxes, he took employee’s taxes out of their pay-checks and DID NOT send this money on to the taxing authority.  The Feds hav already nailed him (note the liens), but WHY HASN’T THE CITY DONE ANYTHING?  I smell cover-up!!! 

    Second reality:  you’re NEVER going to get a true picute of what’s going on in Tipp City any more.  Not with McDermott owning this “premier news web-site”, and HIS OWN  SISTER AS EDITOR!!!!  There was NO MENTION  of the tax issue AT ALL here, was there?  WHY?  They don’t want it to get out because theyt know this is an embarrsment.   Couple that with the nice “cozy” relationship McDermott has with the new Gazzette editors and you’ve got state-run radio, McDermott-style.  You’ll only hear what the want you to hear.   McDermott could have done the right thing and said no to Kessler as President (as could Hale).  But he chose to march right along in lock-step with Gillis, Hale and Kessler.  Things have not changed there, and we may as well start calling  him Mike McLovett.  The 4 to 3 will continue.  

    Finally, Hale, McDermott Gillis and Kessler are now the “4” while the “evil 3” are all up for re-election next time around.  The fix was in for Council President long before Monday night’s meeting.  Note how all during the campaign Kessler and McLovett. . er..  McDermott DID NOT GO AFTER EACH OTHER AT ALL.  No-doubt a  deal was made between those 2 to run this town as they see fit.
    Conspiracy theory??  Check out their posts, and watch how they vote!!!

      Good luck Tipp City, you’ll need it!!!

    • Well I guess you will just have to launch your own independent news site to cover the tax issues.  Or stop prowling this website that you feel is so biased and detestable.

      • Judging by the dwindling number of local advertisers on this site, and lack of relevant stories, it sounds like we WILL  have to start our own site!!!  Great idea!


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