City of Columbus

Council incumbents, bond package win big

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Columbus voters returned three incumbents to City Council and approved four separate bond packages on election night.

A. Troy Miller, Priscilla Tyson and Eileen Paley – all Democrats – bested Republicans Greg Lawson and Brian Bainbridge and independent Nick Schneider, at the ballot box Tuesday, Nov. 5.

With 677 of 698 precincts reporting late Tuesday evening, Tyson led with 46,015 votes (24 percent), Paley garnered42,294 (22 percent) and Miller received 41,379 percent (21 percent), according to the Franklin County Board of Elections.

Lawson finished fourth with 25,368 (13 percent), Bainbridge gathered 23,767 votes (12 percent) and Schneider collected 15,956 votes (8 percent). Write-in candidates took less than 1 percent of the total.

That means one-party rule continues at City Hall, with all seven council members Democrats, as is Mayor Michael B. Coleman.

Lawson chose to see the cup as half full, considering how badly the challengers were outspent, but called Columbus “a tough nut to crack” for the GOP.

“Republicans need to build on that,” Lawson said.

“They need to get aggressive on that and they need to reach out to the community,” he said. “Considering the money spent, we did pretty well.”

Meanwhile, voters supported four separate city bond issues totaling $842 million that will help fund a variety of capital improvement projects. The approval earmarks a portion of the city income tax to repay the bonds, but will not increase taxes.

They include:

• Issue 1, which allocates $53 million for safety and health services, was carried by 52,836 votes (65 percent) to 29,064 votes (35 percent).

• Issue 2, to spend $124 million on recreation and parks, was passed 57,800 votes (70 percent) to 25,119 (30 percent).

• Issue 3, which earmarks $220 million for public service, was approved 56,164 (68 percent) to 26,396 (32 percent).

• Issue 4, which sets aside $445 million for public utilities, received 55,577 (67 percent) to 26,836 (33 percent).

In other election news, veteran Auditor Hugh Dorrian easily beat independent challenger Igor Ternovsky. Dorrian, also a Democrat, received 61,542 votes (88 percent) and Ternovsky collected 7,839 (11 percent). Write-in candidates received less than 1 percent of the total.

City Attorney Richard C. Pfeiffer Jr., also a Democrat, also was re-elected with 63,401 votes. He faced no competition but write-in candidates received 263 votes.

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