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Village races robust as filing nears

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One week remains before the Aug. 9 filing deadline for local political races, and competition is heating up. There is still time, though not much, for residents interested in local governing to throw their hats into the ring.

Village Council has three seats open; Yellow Springs school board, also three; Miami Township Trustees, two; and there’s a vacancy in the mayor’s office. Those running for any local office must file a petition with the Greene County Board of Elections, 551 Ledbetter Road, Xenia. Candidates for Village Council or the office of mayor need the signatures of 33 registered voters; those running for Maimi Township Trustees or school board need to gather the signatures of 25 registered voters. The petitions are due by 4 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 9.

Village Council has a full slate of potential candidates, with 10 individuals known to have taken out petitions for Council. These include Shonda Sneed, incumbent Brian Housh, Chrissy Cruz, Taki Manolakos, Dean Pallotta (who has also taken out a petition for mayor), David Turner, Kevin Stokes, Chaya Fields, Lisa Kreeger and Jared Whittaker. According to Greene County Board of Elections Director Llyn McCoy this week, many prospective candidates, but not all, log their information with the agency, so it is possible that additional people have petitions circulating for Village Council.

Of the 10 people known by the News to have obtained Council petitions, four have already filed with the Board of Elections, as of Aug. 1: Kreeger, Manolakos, Stokes and Turner.

Only one incumbent, Council Vice President Brian Housh, intends to run for one of Council’s three open seats. Current Council member Gerry Simms (who is running for mayor) and President Karen Wintrow both recently announced they won’t be seeking re-election. 

In the mayor’s race, an especially robust field of candidates is emerging after longtime Mayor Dave Foubert  recently announced his retirement following 26 years in office. Six people have taken out petitions for that race, according to Board of Elections Director McCoy. These include Dean Pallotta (who has also taken out a petition for Council), David Osterholm, Cathy Price, Laura Curliss, Gerry Simms and Pam Conine. Of the six, four have already filed as of Aug. 1: Conine, Price, Simms and Curliss.

A person may circulate petitions for more than one office, but may file for only one, according to McCoy.

The race for school board has drawn four potential candidates for three open seats, including incumbents Steven Conn and Aïda Merhemic and newcomers Joseph Carr and Steve McQueen. Carr, Conn and Merhemic have already filed petitions.

McQueen has also taken out a petition for Miami Township Trustees, where two open seats have attracted interest from five people so far: incumbents Mark Crockett and Lamar Spracklen, and newcomers McQueen, Douglas Bailey and Don Hollister. Three candidates, Spracklen, Bailey and Hollister, have filed.

All completed petitions must be filed by Aug. 9 at 4 p.m. Petitions will be formally certified by the Board of Elections on Aug. 21 at 4 p.m., according to McCoy.

After that step, it’s up to the candidates — and to local voters, who will cast their ballots on Tuesday, Nov. 7.

The News will provide in-depth coverage of the official candidates in the coming months.


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