ELIDA — There are numerous races in Allen County, including five people looking to fill four seats on Elida Village Council.
Rhonda McCoy, an incumbent, has served for two terms.
“I enjoy what I do. I enjoy being involved in the decisions that are made for the village.
I went to meetings for about three years before I ran, that way, I would have a good feel for what was going on,” McCoy said.
McCoy agrees that the budget is a big concern.
“We’re not in bad shape but we have to live within our means. We don’t want to go raising taxes to do anything frivolous,” she said.
Michael Sebonoler was appointed to Elida Village Council, serving about 3½ years.
“I want to give back to the community. I’m retired from Apollo. I was the carpentry teacher there for 32 years. I want to be a part of a government entity. I have a lot of interest in politics. My big interest is I want the village to live within its means. I guess I feel as a taxpayer, I pay plenty of taxes and I want to see where that money goes,” he said.
Sebonoler is proud of the infrastructure improvements that have been made.
“It kind of opened my eyes a little bit. With the aging infrastructure, Elida has put in a water tower. They did quite a big upgrade to the sewage treatment plant and before the state Route 309 project came through we replaced a lot of the aging water lines underneath state Route 309 so we wouldn’t have to dig up the new highway. It’s really opened my eyes being on council just how expensive it is to maintain the infrastructure,” he said.
Darryl Nichols is no stranger to politics.
“I’m a former council member, former mayor of Elida and that’s when I was about 20 years younger,” Nichols said. My kids were younger at that time and my sister had passed away and I decided it was more important for me to spend time with my kids than public service, so I got out of politics and now that I’m older I’ve decided I need to take a look at what things are going on here in the village,” he said.
Taxes are also a concern for Nichols.
“Things have changed quite a little bit. We need to be more fiscally responsible with the taxpayer’s money and try and run the village like a business. If you’re running a business, you’re looking to make a profit. Well, we’re not looking to make a profit but we’re looking at we don’t have to come to the constituents to ask for more money because we’re not spending the money in a proper ways,” he said.
Claude Paxton, an incumbent, is also concerned about Elida’s finances.
“Financial stability of the village is important. I think the one we’re looking at the most. We haven’t discussed any ways of addressing the perceived problem there except for the possibility of a hard-water policy. We did have a council of the whole meeting which primarily centered on that issue but then was tabled until a new council comes up,” he said.
Paxton is hoping more help on the economic development front can be beneficial to Elida.
“I guess the main thing I wanted to says is my ideas of financial stability is first to promote economic development in our community and I’ve suggested the village contact Allen County Economic Development Group for assistance in this area and promote policies of annexation and as I put in my League of Women Voters statement, I implore annexation but I am skeptical of policies that mandate annexation especially where current customers are concerned. The only customers we’re talking about at this point is nonresidential customers not residential customers. I want to make that clear,” he said.
Marv Adams did not respond to calls for comment, but in comments to the Lima League of Women Voters he said finances were also a concern for him as well.
Adams calls “Increasing Village Revenue to offset increasing overhead of Elida’s Village Expenses in excess of income,” as the single most important issue facing the village of Elida.
Adams also supported working “hard with an economic development [group] to bring new businesses to our village.”
Other important races are sprinkled through the Allen County ballot.
Five people are running for Beaverdam Village Council. Only the top four will be selected. They include Pamela S. Lepine, Todd A. Long, Carl Murray, Jerry A. Neuenschwander and Julia Yeagle.
Six people are running for Harrod Council. The top four will be elected. Those running include Andrew Caprella, Thomas Ekleberry, Terry Edward Gross II, Dan Neeley Jr., James G. Pinks and Lowell E. Smith.
Three people are seeking two seats on the Bath school board. They include Bob Birkemeier, Rob McPheron, Van F. Spragg.
Four people are running for the three open seats on the Bluffton school board. Those running are Brad Fruchey, Deborah A. Herr, Wesley L. Klinger and Ken Lugibihl.
The Perry school board races features four people running for two seats. Those hoping to be elected are Tammy Lehman McDonnell, Yvonne Marrs, Rusty E. Rush and Marc Sidener.
The Spencerville school board includes five candidates vying for three seats. District voters will consider the election of Spencer R. Clum, Penny Kill, Holly M. Lee, Ronald J. Meyer II, and Clarke Prichard.
The Allen County Educational Service Center race has four people running for three seats. They include James D. Cooper, Mike Estes, David E. Mayer and Jo A. McConnell.
Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409