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Races bring out 42 percent of voters

Following are several stories that summarize Tuesday night’s General Election results:<!—->.

Wednesday, November 07, 2001

Following are several stories that summarize Tuesday night’s General Election results:


Income tax hike shot down

By Jeremy W. Schneider

The Ironton Tribune

Ironton voters let their ballots do the talking – the proposed municipal income tax increase was shot down by an overwhelming majority.

The proposed three year, 0.45-percent increase in the municipal income tax was supposed to give the city a three-year time frame to work on recruiting business while keeping the general fund afloat. With the measure failing – by a 61.2-percent margin – the city will now turn its focus to living within its budget, a step that will probably spell decreases in the services the city provides and job layoffs.

Mayor Bob Cleary, disappointed the measure failed, said "It looks like the new city council now has its job cut out for them." Cleary said he will meet with council and determine what course the city should now take.

Cleary speculated that "unless some other fees are enacted," there will be cuts in general fund departments. Cleary said without the increase in the city’s revenue, cuts will be necessary to offset the difference. The city will also enact a spending freeze, with the exception of emergency purchases and the city’s administration will find other avenues to cut spending.

Cleary said he would look at all of the general fund departments and see where cuts can be made. Cleary said some general fund jobs can be transferred to enterprise fund departments where openings currently exist. Cleary said anywhere from three to five jobs could be absorbed by the enterprise fund departments.

Cleary said he doesn’t have a specific number of jobs that will go on the chopping block, but the salary line item needs trimmed about $300,000 to $400,000 per year. Cleary said, with salary and benefits, the average city employee makes about $35,000 per year. With that number, it would appear about 10 employees could face cuts.

Jim Tordiff, who is currently the council chairman and was reelected to another four year term, said, "we (the new council) sure have our hands full."

The new council takes office Dec. 1, and has until the end of the year to hash out a new budget.

Tordiff said the new council will be faced with "putting a budget together with an awful lot of cuts." Tordiff added, " I understand a lot of people aren’t working and can’t pay more."

Councilman Jesse Roberts, who will take over as council chair in December, said he will abide by the decision of the people and, at this time, not support adding an additional fee. He said city officials will now have to work on making the cuts necessary for the city to live within its means.

Councilman Richard Price, who also regained his position on council, said he, too, will abide by the people’s decision and not support additional fees. Price said Ironton residents spoke and they "don’t want to pay more fees and taxes."

Over the next two months, council will work on preparing a budget that will allow the city to operate in the black. With another hit to the budget looming on the horizon – a possible reduction or even elimination of local government monies from the state which would equal about another half-million dollar hit in the general fund – council will take a sharp look at reworking the city’s budget.


Harvey and Parker win Ironton Board of Education race

By Allen Blair

The Ironton Tribune

Two new faces will sit at the Ironton Board of Education table next year.

Newcomer Teresa Parker and former school board member Steve Harvey each took 27 percent of Tuesday’s vote to lead the race, with 1,864 and 1,849 ballots respectively.

Retired teacher Jeff Handley took 22 percent of the vote with 1,510 ballots cast in his favor. B.J. Hannon, the lone incumbent, received 18 percent with 1,236 votes.

"I am humbled by all the support," Mrs. Parker said, adding that the race was her first foray into politics.

"I have wonderful people working with me," she said. "It was mostly a positive experience, and I’m ready to do a lot of hard work."

There is much that needs attention in the Ironton district, and there is much to learn about, Mrs. Parker said.

"I’m going to consider this my rookie year," she said, adding she’ll probably do a lot more listening than talking.

Harvey, who resigned from the same post several years ago, said he also feels humbled to be returned to the board.

"I’m looking forward to serving, getting my feet wet in January," Harvey said, adding that he thought voters wanted a change.

"The people elected me to do a job I will do my best and vote my heart," he said.

Harvey credited his win to "a lot of good people" who worked on the campaign.

Voters in the Ironton school board race – which totaled 6,764 – numbered less than the Ironton City Council race. The council race drew 10,554 voters.

Totals in each race are unofficial until certified by the Lawrence County Board of Elections on Nov. 17.


Newcomers Elam, Isaac elected to Ironton City Council

By Jeremy W. Schneider

The Ironton Tribune

Two new people will join Ironton City Council starting Dec. 1.

John Elam and Robert Isaac secured seats on council and Jim Tordiff, Richard Price and Brent Pyles will return to their positions with the city’s government.

Elam, who ran for a four-year seat, said he felt humbled that city residents turned out to support him in his debut run for office. He said he was "grateful to have the support of the people." Elam added that he "won’t let the people and down" and will work for the betterment of the city.

Elam was a strong contender in the election. He received 1,388 votes, running second to vote winner, Tordiff.

Robert Isaac collected the third highest amount of votes, 1,259, and said he was surprised at how well he did. Isaac said he was looking forward to starting in December to work for the city.

Jim Tordiff will return to council for another four-year term. Tordiff said he was "appreciative of the people that supported me," adding that the new council has its hands full when it comes to hashing out a new budget for the city.

Brent Pyles will also return for another four years. Pyles replaced Hugh Donald Scott, who resigned from council earlier this year.

Pyles congratulated the others than ran for office saying, "they all ran an excellent race," adding that the next few months for council will be tough as councilmen work to pull together a new budget.

Richard Price will also return to council, filling the unexpired term left open by Joseph Black. Price has been on council for about a year-and-a-half and said he looks forward to "rolling up my sleeves and getting back to it." Price was the vote winner on his ticket, pulling down 1,301 votes.


Several tight races on the township and village levels

By Allen Blair

The Ironton Tribune

The hot race of the night? Well, several.

Aside from heated contests in the City of Ironton, voters across Lawrence County posted a turnout of 42 percent in their pick of close battles, especially in townships.

In Upper Township, incumbent trustee Robert Ackerman lost by eight votes to incumbent Charles Rowe and newcomer Lindsey Pemberton.

In Fayette Township, incumbent Perry Brock held on to his trustee seat by only 11 votes against clerk Les York, 917 to 906. Terry Wise was the top vote getter with 1,114 ballots cast in his favor.

One of the more closely-watched township races happened in Elizabeth.

By night’s end, Ron Davis led the ticket with 412 votes. Just behind him were Ricky Markel and Roy Mullins.

Mullins will sit in the second trustee seat, winning by only two votes over Markel, 384 to 382.

Overall, trustee races seemed quiet, said candidates and politicos who watched precinct returns at the courthouse Tuesday night.

"It was a low turnout," said Hamilton Township trustee president Bob Blankenship, who won re-election with 356 votes. He was followed by Vic Hopper with 240.

Everybody fought some good races, some hard races, and the heavy ballots could have split votes in places, Blankenship said.

"Everybody worked hard," he said. "Some didn’t win that maybe should have."


In villages, incumbents held their ground or those running were uncontested.

Robert Armstrong, David Classing, Danny Smith and Ronald L. West all retook their South Point Village Council seats.

Larry Estep, Paul E. Hart, Richard L. Stover and Kenneth Wolfe will sit on Chesapeake council.

Michael D. Chatfield, David Davidson, Jarrod Robinson and Jeannette Waginger will serve on Hanging Rock Council.

The race was a little closer in Coal Grove, where Larry McDaniel was the top council vote-getter with 350, followed by Randall Wise with 332, William R. Bryant with 324 and Kenneth J. Pyles with 323. Joe Ross is the only candidate who won’t sit on council, coming in at a close 298 votes.

And Athalia elected three council members – Melanie Blazer, Gary Simpson and Barbara J. Ward – although there needed to be four elected.


County boards of education …

Tribune Staff report

When the school boards in Lawrence County convene after Jan. 2, 2002, all but two will have new members joining the ranks.

In the Rock Hill district, both incumbents were re-elected, but the president of the board was nearly upset. Wanda Jenkins won election over John Roy Floyd by a slim 1,377 to 1,325 margin. Incumbent Troy Hardy, meanwhile, carried the ticket with 1,450 votes.

Incumbents in the Fairland and South Point districts, meanwhile, were voted out of their seats.

Ted Edwards took the seat of Donald Pruitt in the Fairland district as he carried the ticket with 834 votes. Incumbents Charles Workman and Iva Jean Willis took the other two open seats with 807 and 752 votes respectively. Pruitt finished with 666 votes.

Newcomers John Sherman and Fred Clay won the two open seats on the South Point board as incumbent Glenn Adkins was voted out. Sherman finished with 1,194 votes, Clay had 856 while Adkins finished a distant fifth with 570 votes. Larry Musick finished third in the race with 700 votes and Jim Scherer finished fourth with 685.

In the Symmes Valley district, two new board members were elected to the three open seats. Wayne Taylor finished with 720 votes, followed by Mike Wall with 659 and incumbent Jeffrey Floyd with 600. Kent Wells finished a close fourth with 562 votes.

Dan Jeffries carried the Chesapeake district ticket with 1,025 votes while incumbent Thomas Curry won the other seat with 941 votes.

In the Dawson-Bryant district, incumbents Les Boggs, Debbie Drummond and Sadie Mulkey all won re-election as they were the only people to file for the seats up for vote. Likewise, Phillip Carpenter, Roland Hayes and Ray Malone won the three vacant seats on the Lawrence County Educational Service Center board as they were the only three to file.