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County executive candidates spoke out this week about the secrecy of the Cuyahoga County transition process, but candidate Ken Lanci has taken his criticism a step further.

Lanci has questioned the transition team's aim to find ways of cutting county spending by 15 percent and transferring those projected savings - $50 million - for "economic development." If a county executive candidate disagrees with this policy recommendation, that candidate should make it part of their platfrom, transition co-chair Marty Zanotti told Scene.

Lanci says the transition team has already politicized a process that officials swore would be free of politicking.

"They're saying 'take a stand'," Lanci tells Scene. "We haven't seen where the $50 million is coming from - we have no clue how they decided that. As a result, to either say 'yes' or 'no' is irresponsible. You have to have information."

Lanci has gone so far as to ask to be included in the transition's executive committee. "That's why I want a seat at the table," says Lanci. "If i take a stand, it will be with the knowledge that this makes good sense, or no sense, and then I'll stick to my (stance)."

Zanotti has said that candidates would not be included in transition committees, even as the Plain Dealer continues to speculate that Zanotti and other committee chairs could indeed run for county executive.

Meanwhile, Henry Gomez of the Plain Dealer is reporting that committee meetings will indeed be open to the public, contrary to what Zanotti and co-chair Jim McCafferty announced earlier this month. — Damian Guevara

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