SIDNEY — Sidney Mayor Mike Barhorst was recently elected first vice president of the Mayors Association of Ohio at the annual meeting.
The meeting, originally scheduled for June, was held virtually just prior to Christmas. Barhorst previously served as second-vice president of the organization.
Glenwillow Mayor Mark Cegelka was elected president. Batavia Mayor John Thebout was elected second-vice president. Bellefontaine Mayor Ben Stahler was elected secretary. Saint Paris Mayor Brenda Cook was elected treasurer.
The officers of the association rotate between cities and villages. Terms are normally for 12 months although outgoing President Jeff Hazel of Celina served for a year and a half.
“We kept hoping that the pandemic would subside, allowing us to have an in-person meeting,” Barhorst said in a press release. “We had even discussed combining the annual meeting of the Mayors Association with that of the Ohio Municipal League, as they meet much later in the year. When that meeting was also cancelled, the Executive Committee made the decision to meet virtually.”
“Because of his other duties, Glenwillow Mayor Mark Cegelka was actually relieved that he would only be serving for six months,” Barhorst said. “Just as Jeff’s term may be the longest in the history of the Mayors Association, Mark’s term will likely be the shortest.
“Celina Mayor Jeff Hazel did an outstanding jo. Mayors from across Ohio have been meeting virtually nearly every week to discuss matters of mutual concern. He has moderated nearly every one of those calls.Those virtual weekly calls have provided the opportunity for mayors to exchange information and best practices with each other,” Barhorst said. “They have been quite helpful.
“More than 10 million of Ohio’s 11.7 million people live in one of Ohio’s 937 municipalities,” Barhorst said. “Cities and villages are the engines of Ohio’s economy, with more than 80% of all business and industry located in municipalities.”
The purpose of the Mayors Association of Ohio is the improvement of municipal government and the promotion of the general welfare of cities and villages of Ohio. This is accomplished by cooperating with The Ohio Municipal League in the maintenance of a central bureau of information and research for the collection, analysis, and dissemination of information concerning municipal government; the fostering of conferences, meetings, and short courses for the discussion and study of municipal problems and the techniques involved in their solution; and, providing an opportunity for mayors to meet as a separate group for the discussion of the special problems, responsibilities and experiences as heads of cities and villages of the state.
In addition, the Mayors Association of Ohio publishes and issues bulletins and reports on municipal government; encourages a harmony of action among the municipalities of Ohio and other agencies of government in all matters which affect the citizens of Ohio; and, creates an awareness of all levels of government of the problems of municipal government in Ohio by presenting the facts and experiences upon which to formulate sound municipal policies.