To secede or not to secede from Ohio is not exactly the question facing Toledo.

But getting attention from state officials by promoting secession talk is what drove The Blade newspaper in Toledo to editorialize last month in favor of the city joining nearby Michigan.

"We want to get someone's attention in Columbus [the state [the state capital] that we're being shortchanged by the state," said Tom Walton, the newspaper's editor.

The editorial points out that northwest Ohio, "is already closely linked with Michigan because of its heavy reliance on the auto industry as a source of employment." The editorial also notes that Michigan's highway system is better than Ohio's.

But in the end, the editorial calls upon the state government to start funneling a greater share of tax dollars to the Toledo area.

Jim O'Neal, executive assistant to Mayor John McHugh, did not disagree with the assertion that Toledo is Ohio's "forgotten child," but said the administration does not support secession.

"Ohio wouldn't want to lose a great town like Toledo, and Toledo wouldn't want to lose a great state like Ohio," he said.

Meanwhile, the city projects a healthier budget this year. Mr. O'Neal said Toledo expects to end the current fiscal year on Dec. 31 with a surplus of at least $3 million in its $134.6 million general fund budget due to an increase in revenues.

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