Election 2014: Kasich, incumbents coast to victory; most Lucas County levies passWritten by Staff Reports | | firstname.lastname@example.org
Gov. John Kasich and most state and local incumbents cruised to easy victories Nov. 4.
Lucas County voters passed levies for Toledo Public Schools (53 percent), Mental Health & Recovery Services Board (63 percent), Area Office on Aging of Northwestern Ohio (62 percent), Sylvania Fire Department (57 percent), Washington Local Schools (51 percent), Maumee City Schools (52 percent), Ottawa Hills roads (62 percent), Washington Township fire (67 percent), Waterville Township waste (52 percent) and Springfield Township (72 percent).
Voters denied levies to Lucas County Children Services (51 percent), Oregon City Schools (60 percent) and Providence Township streets (58 percent).
Voters in both Jerusalem Township and Springfield School District passed one levy, but failed another. In Wood County, Rossford voted to keep TARTA service (65 percent).
Kasich was declared the winner minutes after polls closed, easily defeating Democratic challenger Ed FitzGerald to clinch his second term with about 64 percent of the vote statewide. Green Party candidate Anita Rios of Toledo earned 3 percent of the state’s vote.
Also retaining their seats were Attorney General Mike DeWine, Auditor of State Dave Yost, Secretary of State Jon Husted and Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel.
Lucas County Auditor
Anita Lopez, a Democrat, retained her seat as Lucas County Auditor with 64 percent of the vote over Republican John Navarre, an auditor’s office employee.
“I am grateful and blessed for another term to serve the public,” Lopez told Toledo Free Press on Nov. 4.
Carol Contrada, president of the Lucas County Commissioners, defeated challenger Kevin Haddad with almost 60 percent of the vote.
“It is what it is, and the people got what they wanted,” Haddad, a former Sylvania Township Trustee, said Nov. 4. “It’s going to be mini-Detroit here, and people are going to leave this city. I’ll never run for political office again, and I’m going to leave here, too. If people are going to be that stupid and re-elect the same people, they deserve what they get.”
Issue 1 (TPS)
Toledo Public Schools’ levy passed with 53 percent of the vote. The estimated $66.5 million that will be raised over five years through the 5.8-mill levy will be the first new money for the district since 2001.
“This is a great win for TPS, but more importantly an even greater win for Toledo,” said Superintendent Romules Durant.
Issue 7 (LCCS)
The 1.75-mill levy for Lucas County Children Services (LCCS) failed with 51 percent of voters saying no.
“Lucas County voters have spoken about the level of support that they want to provide children and families in this community,” LCCS Executive Director Dean Sparks wrote in an email to Toledo Free Press. “We are disappointed at the outcome of Issue 7, but we will continue to focus our efforts on investigating reports of abuse and neglect, keeping kids safe and finding new homes for the children that need them.”
Issue 8 (Mental Health)
Voters approved a 10-year, 0.5-mill renewal levy for the Mental Health & Recovery Services Board with 63 percent of the vote. The tax is expected to generate $3.4 million per year and will continue to cost the owner of a $100,000 home about $15 annually.
“We believe we’ve been making substantial progress in improving our system of care and following through on the commitment we made in the 2012 levy,” said Executive Director Scott Sylak. “We appreciate the voters’ validation.”
Issue 9 (Senior Citizens):
Issue 9 passed with 62 percent of the vote. The five-year levy renewal with a small increase is expected to provide $4.3 million annually for services for area senior citizens. The total cost to the owner of a $100,000 home will be about $19 per year.
“This will help us help older citizens in Lucas County remain at home,” said president and CEO Billie Johnson. “This will help us restore some of the cuts over the past several years to our home delivery meal program and Alzheimer’s daycare and respite care programs.”
Sylvania Fire Chief Jeffrey Kowalski was afraid he’d have to close a fire station and lay off firefighters if Sylvania’s fire levy didn’t pass, but 57 percent of voters supported the new, continuous 1.5-mill levy. It is expected to collect an estimated $1.82 million annually and will cost the owner of a $100,000 home $53 a year.
“Sylvania Township and City residents — Thank you for exercising your right and privilege as a citizen of our great country to vote [Nov. 4], and thank you for your vote for the fire department,” Kowalski posted on the department’s Facebook page.
In District 44, Democrat incumbent Michael Ashford defeated Republican challenger John Insco with 81 percent of the vote.
“For someone that’s new, I think I did pretty good,” Insco said. “This was a learning experience for me. … I still believe business people are the best leaders. Within the next two years, I’m going to be right back in the saddle again.”
In District 45, Democrat incumbent Teresa Fedor defeated Toledo attorney James Nowak with 64 percent of the vote.
“It was a great race. I enjoyed all the help that I had from the people that I worked with,” Nowak said.
In District 46, Democrat incumbent Michael Sheehy defeated Republican Drew Blazsik with 57 percent of the vote.
“I’m humbled and happy and grateful to all those supporters who worked so hard for me,” Sheehy said.
Democrat incumbent Edna Brown retained her District 11 seat against Republican challenger Ernest McCarthy with 64 percent of the vote.
In District 5, incumbent Republican Bob Latta defeated Democrat Robert Fry and Libertarian Eric Eberly with 59 percent of the vote.
“I’m very grateful and humbled once again to have the trust and confidence of the people of the 5th District,” Latta said.
Fry was disappointed in his party’s turnout.
“[The Democratic Party] didn’t show up well. We were weak this year. Maybe I was, too,” he said. “We didn’t have a lot to put out.”
Eberly said he was not shocked.
“I don’t think the results were really a surprise given the way the districts are gerrymandered. It pretty much guarantees the outcome. Certainly I think voter turnout was disappointing,” he said.
In District 9, Democrat Rep. Marcy Kaptur is serving her 16th term. She handily won re-election with more than 79 percent of the vote over Republican Richard May of Cleveland.
“I am deeply grateful to our citizenry for the opportunity to serve them and our precious coastal region,” Kaptur said. “I look forward to the challenges before us as we secure greater economic, educational, environmental and national security for this generation and those to follow.”
In Lucas County, Lisa McGowan defeated Jay Feldstein with 61 percent of the vote for Common Pleas Judge, Domestic Relations Division, while Ian English topped Mark Davis with 52 percent of the vote for Common Pleas Judge, General Trial Division.
For state Supreme Court justice, Republican incumbent Sharon Kennedy defeated Tom Letson with 74 percent of the vote, and Republican incumbent Judi French edged Democrat John O’Donnell with 50.4 percent of the vote.
Toledo Free Press writers Danielle Stanton, Tom Konecny, Sarah Ottney, Joel Sensenig and Matt Liasse contributed to this report.