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The World Weightlifting Championships
A Huge Success

Mike Cady

Much was reported and discussed about The 7th World Weightlifting Championships for University and College Students held at Mount Saint Mary's University, Emmitsburg, Maryland on June 30 - July 3, and most of the comments were positive. However, there were questions raised as to the appropriateness of my involvement as a County Commissioner.

Prior to responding to those questions, I would like to focus on the positive. Dr. Tamas Ajan (President of the International Weightlifting Federation and Member of the International Olympic Committee) characterized the event "as the best organized international competition" he attended in his forty years of service at the international level. This success was made possible with the 100+ volunteers and 52 sponsors. God bless them.

Additionally, Frederick County was selected over London, Paris and Tokyo to host its first Olympic sport World Championship. The competition was broadcasted live through out the World on the Web and Frederick County is internationally known as a wonderful place to visit. A record 138 athletes from 30 countries registered to compete. The USA Men's Team won its first World Title while the Women's Team placed second. The Mount Saint Mary's University facilities and services were unparalleled by any organization. The hospitality extended by the citizens of Emmitsburg and Thurmont were considered by all as outstanding. Most important, there was not a single injury.

Regarding the questions raised, this was a PUBLIC event. My actions were never a secret as I frequently reported on the progress at County Commissioner and town meetings, held press conferences and sent numerous press releases. Also, our website posted all relevant information, including schedule of events, volunteers and sponsors.

Volunteers: I did not request a single County employee to volunteer. Several approached me and asked if they could assist and I enthusiastically welcomed their help. Never did a single volunteer use County time or materials to assist in planning or conducting this event and, those who were at the event used approved leave.

Sponsors: I did not solicit a single sponsor. However, sponsors and participation fees did fund this event. Taxpayers did not underwrite one penny of the cost. And yes, some local developers were sponsors. Of the 52 sponsors, 15 are developers. Of the $48,000 received in sponsorships, $12,750 was received from developers. Thus, developers did not heavily finance this event. All funds were solicited by the Sponsor Committee and deposited in the USA Weightlifting account. Also, if after all of the bills are paid there is a positive account balance, this amount will be donated to the Sheriff's Youth Ranch. Conversely, if there are insufficient funds to pay the bills, I am personally liable.

County e-mail: Since taking office, I received and responded to 350 e-mails and associated with the event. They were essential in planning and hosting this competition and did not cost the taxpayers a penny. Because I considered my work to be County related, it was not personal. I do not use County resources for personal reasons or personal gain.

Use of County office: This event was four years in the planning and I did the lion's share of the work at Winchester Hall after taking office in December 2002. I do not consider this inappropriate, as I believe my efforts were for the good of Frederick County and a constituent service to our citizens, especially those residing in the northern part of our County. During this period and, in particular from January to July 2004, I performed my County Commissioner duties to the best of my ability while conducting event related activities. The County always received my best efforts by devoting 12 to 16 hours a day, seven days a week, to being a Commissioner and Event Director.