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5 Seek GOP At-Large Nods

February 7, 2013

ST. MARYS — A slew of candidates have filed petitions seeking seats on St. Marys City Council.

The Republican primary for St. Marys Council-at-large will feature a crowded race. Incumbents Bob Fitzgerald, 1713 Fenway Court, and James Harris, 413 Concord Ave., are seeking re-election. Joining them on the ballot are Russell Bailey, 328 Orchard Drive, Dan Uhlenhake, 606 Farrington Court, and Todd Fleagle, 1001 W. Spring St. Voters in the Republican primary may cast ballots for up to three candidates. The top three vote getters will move on to the November election.

“I’ve been thinking about it in the back of my mind for a while,” Uhlenhake told The Evening Leader. “I have always been interested in politics ... I always thought it would be a good idea to get in there.”

Fitzgerald said he would like to continue to serve the residents with a second term.

“Based on my experiences so far, I have found that I have enjoyed it and want to continue to serve the citizens of St. Marys,” Fitzgerald said. “I have learned a lot and I hope to continue to put that information to good use.”

Fleagle retired last year as the development manager for the city and Bailey serves as the Auglaize County dog warden.

“I’ve lived here all my life and I care about what happens to our community,” Fleagle said. “I enjoyed my career with the city and hopefully that experience will be helpful.”

Harris said he would like to continue to work to move the city forward.

“We still have a lot to get done and I think my experience is going to be needed with all the experience that is retiring this year,” Harris said.

The 2nd Ward Republican primary race will feature David A. Lunz, 1101 Neil Ave., facing off against Cameron Ruppert, 316 Orchard Drive.

Attempts to reach other candidates in contested races for comments were unsuccessful as of press time.

Running unopposed in the Republican primary are John Bubp, 609 Farrington Court, 1st Ward Councilor, and Dan Hoelscher, 714 W. South St., council president. No Republicans filed to seek the treasurer spot or the 3rd and 4th Ward City Council seats.

All Democratic candidates for St. Marys City Council are running unopposed. Advancing to the November election will be Dennis Pfeffenberger, 1113 Neil Ave., as treasurer, Kenneth J. Koverman, 1128 Holly St., for 2nd Ward Councilor, Gregory B. Freewalt, 1015 W. High St., for 3rd Ward Councilor, and Robin Willoughby, 415 Beech St., for 4th Ward Councilor. No Democrats filed to seek the council president, 1st Ward or council-at-large seats.

Several issues also will dot ballots throughout Auglaize County. Voters in the St. Marys School District will decide the fate of a five-year, 5-mill levy coupled with a 1 percent income tax for operations. Voters in Waynesfield will cast ballots for the renewal of the school district’s five-year, 4.9- mill permanent improvement levy. Buckland is asking for an additional 4 mills for fire and rescue expenses. That request would be for five years.

The deadline for nonpartisan candidates seeking an office for which there is a primary election is May 6. All nonpartisan candidates seeking an office for which there is not a primary election — township trustees and school boards — must submit paperwork by Aug. 7. The primary election is scheduled for May 7.

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