Candidates, issues approved for May Primary

By Melanie Speicher -

SIDNEY — Petitions and issues for the May primary were approved Tuesday during the Shelby County Board of Elections meeting.

Three petitions — two from Republican candidates and one from a Democratic candidate — were received for the Sidney Municipal Court Judge seat. Incumbent Duane Goettemoeller, of Anna, a Democrat, will face the winner of the May Primary Republican race. Republican candidates who filed petitions were Gary Carter, of Anna, and Steven Geise, of Sidney.

Fifty signatures were required on each petition.

“All three petitions exceeded the 50 valid signatures,” said Deputy Director Donnie Chupp. “All three petitions had all three parts done correctly.”

The petitions were accepted and the Republican race will appear on the May 7 ballot. This is a countywide race.

Four issues for the May election were also approved by members of the board of elections.

Residents who reside within the city of Sidney corporation limits will be voting on a .3 percent earned income tax levy. This is in addition to the existing 1.5 percent tax on income currently being levied. If approved, monies will be collected for a continuing period beginning Jan. 1, 2020.

The purpose of the tax is two-fold. Fifty percent of the revenue from the additional income tax will be dedicated for the construction, reconstruction, resurfacing and maintenance of streets, alleys, bridges, curbs and gutters within the city of Sidney.

The other 50 percent of the revenue from the additional income tax will be dedicated for fire department operations and capital improvements and equipment, maintenance and repair. Funds will be used to construct station 3 on Wapakoneta Avenue.

Fort Loramie Local School District voters will be asked to approve a renewal of a 1.5 percent income tax. The five-year levy, which will begin Jan. 1, 2020, will be used for current operating expenses of the district.

Russia Local School District voters will be voting on a renewal levy of for operating expenses. The levy will not exceed .9 mills for each $1 of property valuation.

Graham Local School District is seeking approval for a 1 percent earn income tax levy. The levy, if approved, would be for a five-year period and first collection would begin Jan. 1, 2020. The monies would be used for current operating expenses of the school district.

Following an executive session, the board approved salary increases for the three full-time board of elections employee. Clerk Trina Riethman will receive a $1 per hour increase while Director Pam Kerrigan and Chupp will receive 3 percent increases. The increases are retroactive to Jan. 1, 2019

In other business, the board reviewed the staff recommendation for the voting equipment purchase. The funding for a majority of the purchase is being funded by the Secretary of State’s Office.

The purchase includes one central tabulator and its software; 36 precinct scanners and software; 22 express vote ballot marking devices and software; electionware software; two ballot printers and software; and installation of the workstation. The total amount the state will pay is $446,257.90.

The training of board of elections staff, Election Day support, creation of a test deck, printing of the test deck, pre-election ballot printer system setup and allot printer system processing fees — totalling $6,375 — is the county’s responsibility.

The board also approved the bills which have been filed for audit.

The board will hold an organizational meeting on March 4 at 7:30 a.m. The next regular meeting will be Wednesday, March 20, at 7:30 a.m.

By Melanie Speicher

Reach the writer at 927-538-4822.

Reach the writer at 927-538-4822.