Galion wants mayor back, other election results
By Matt Echelberry
The preliminary results of the 2012 election for Crawford County were released at 11:30 on election night. For the presidential race, Republican Mitt Romney had a major lead over Democrat Barrack Obama with 11,561 (60 percent) votes to Obama’s 7,207 (37 percent). A total of 19,229 votes, including early and absentee ballots, were counted.
In local issues, Galion voters decided they wanted a different form of city government. Issue 5 to abolish the City Charter was a close race as early election results came in, but votes for abolishment pulled ahead. Out of 3,988 votes cast for Issue 5, 2,267 (56 percent) were for and 1,721 (43 percent) were against. This means Galion’s current Charter/City Manager form of government will revert back to a Mayoral form.
No one from the City of Galion was present at the County Courthouse, where the voting results were released. Galion resident Paula Durbin, who has been an outspoken supporter of abolishing the Charter, was present. When results for 38 out of 41 precincts were released, she commented that she was very happy Issue 5 pulled ahead by 13 percentage points.
“[The movement for abolishing the Charter] came together in a short period of time. The citizens have spoken,” Durbin said, adding that she looks forward to the change.
On May 7, 2013, a primary election will be held to vote for a mayor, which Galion has not had in more than 25 years, when the Charter was established.
Galion City Schools had an income tax levy on the ballot, which failed by a wide margin. Out of 5,313 votes cast, 3,571 (67 percent) were against the levy, with 1,742 (32 percent) for it.
Superintendent Kathy Jenney and Treasurer Terri Day were at the Courthouse that evening to await results. Jenney thanked the voters who did support the school and also commented that this year was the first time Galion City Schools put a levy on the ballot in a long time. She cited the effects of last spring’s staff reductions as well as last month’s release of the property reappraisals as major factors in why the levy did not pass.
Although there may have been a shortage of manpower in advertising this time around, Jenney was confident that the administration would be better prepared for advertising when it puts the levy on the ballot for May’s election. “In the spring, we’ll be able to get the word out better,” Jenney said. “When people have a chance to really learn about why it’s needed, once they better understand, I think they’ll support it.”
In the meantime, the Board of Education will analyze the results and look for feedback from the community to determine if they need to change aspects of the levy.
If the levy does not pass in the May election, Jenney stated that the district will be forced to work closely with the State on further cuts that will need to be made.
At the county level, there were two races for Crawford County Commissioner. For the Commissioner term commencing Jan. 2, 2013, Steve Reinhard won with 9,979 votes (54 percent), beating Floyd Reinhart who garnered 5,539 votes (30 percent) and independent candidate John Rossington, who had 2,631 votes (14 percent).
For Commissioner term commencing Jan. 3, 2013, incumbent Doug Weisenauer will get a second term with 9,867 votes (54 percent) over Gary Miller’s 8,235 votes (45 percent).
For county prosecutor, Matthew Crall won with 11,792 votes (64 percent), over Jack Felgenhauer with 6,367 votes (35 percent).
Provisional ballots will not be counted until Nov. 20.