Got a question for MAC? E-mail it to askmac@thepaper24-7.com. Got a question? Give it to the Montgomery Answer Connection!
Got a question for MAC? E-mail it to askmac@thepaper24-7.com. Got a question? Give it to the Montgomery Answer Connection!
This week, Thomas Knueven wrote MAC – your Montgomery Answer Connection – and asked about Montgomery County Commissioner John Frey. MAC can’t tell you how much he admires people who have the guts to put their names on their questions, so as my buddy Honest Hoosier would say, here’s a tip of that seed corn cap to you, Mr. Knueven (and MAC is sure proud that I only have to worry about spelling your last name instead of pronouncing it!).
So without any further ado, here’s the question from Mr. Knueven!

Dear MAC,
One commissioner pens frequent columns and advertises regular coffee meetings in the local newspapers. Is taxpayer money used for any of the cost to write, publish or advertise space these efforts? Since these are the product of only one commissioner these appear to be more self promoting, either for re-election or to promote a personal agenda as opposed to general public updates from the commissioners as a group.
Thomas Knueven

MAC reached out to Montgomery County Commissioner John Frey, who I assume Mr. Knueven is talking about. It’s true that Commissioner Frey sends in columns and news items to local media. MAC also reached out to Paper Publisher Tim Timmons and asked if The Paper charges anything for the column or the items like 3 Things or Montgomery Minute that detail when Commissioner Frey is having his Coffee With the Commish. First, here’s what Timmons said:
“No, we don’t charge for that. We offer most of our local politicians space to pen columns so that they can share with the public directly what is going on in our local government. We do ask them to avoid any sort of campaigning – but instead to talk about programs, plans, etc. that are important for the community.”
But what about the ads that have been run? Here’s what Commissioner Frey said:
“As far as the “cost” . . . we have been paying Blue Marketing a $950 / month retainer to manage our community outreach program, i.e. social media, organizing public meetings and editing our bi-weekly articles. The county council denied the funding of this program for 2020.”
Thanks, gentlemen for the explanation!

Stay tuned next week for more of the questions that everyone wants to know the answers to!

Remember if you have a question for MAC (the Montgomery Answer Connection), just e-mail it to askmac@thepaper24-7.com, or go to www.thepaper24-7.com and click on the Ask MAC icon. Got a question? MAC can get the answer!