45 issues on Licking County ballots
5 of 9 local races unopposed
The Nov. 4 general elections could lead to a long night for the Licking County Board of Elections.
Altogether, 45 issues will appear on ballots in Licking County, from issues 1-3 -- state constitutional amendments -- to Southwest Licking Local Schools' $63.4-million bond issue -- issue 49. State issue 4 was withdrawn. Licking County voters won't see issues 7-9.
Elections board director Sue Penick said voters should be prepared and patient for this election because the ballot language for a few of the issues is wordy.
"Read up on issues and candidates," she said. "And please be patient with poll workers."
Patience and preparedness might be more necessary in Pataskala's precinct 3-C, where voters will see the largest number of issues: all state questions, the Pataskala income-tax measure, a referendum on Pataskala's property-maintenance ordinance, Southwest Licking Local Schools' bond issue, a C-TEC levy and a liquor option. Precinct 3-C is at the West Licking fire station, 428 Jefferson St., Pataskala. Precincts 3-B, 4-A and 4-B also are at the fire station.
Early voting could help move things along, though. Penick, who's expecting about an 82-percent voter turnout, said more than 1,100 have voted at the elections office since Sept. 30, with an average of about 150 voters per day.
"There were 363 on Monday," she said. "So if you're coming to the board of elections, expect a line."
Penick said the board has mailed more than 10,000 absentee ballots to voters who have requested them, and another 8,500 to 9,000 will be mailed. Still, the process is going well, she said.
"We're very busy, (but) we have absentee people," she said.
The list of issues that will appear on the ballot follows:
• State issue 1: constitutional amendment to provide for earlier filing deadlines for the statewide ballot.
• State issue 2: constitutional amendment to authorize the state to issue bonds to continue the Clean program for environmental revitalization and conservation.
• State issue 3: constitutional amendment to protect private-party rights in ground water, lakes and other watercourses.
• State issue 5: a referendum on legislation making changes to check-cashing lending (sometimes known as payday lending), fees, interest rates and practices.
• State issue 6: constitutional amendment by petition for a casino in Wilmington.
• Heath issue 10: local option in precinct 1-B for Super America, 624 S. 30th St.
• Newark issue 11: local option in precinct 6-D for Roosters, 1414 N. 21st St.
• Pataskala issue 12: a 2-percent income tax for general municipal operations.
• Pataskala issue 13: a referendum on a property-maintenance ordinance.
• Pataskala issue 14: a local option in precinct 3-C for VIP Bar & Grill, 510 E. Broad St.
• Reynoldsburg issues 15 and 16: local options in precinct 3-A for Kroger, 8500 E. Main St.
• Alexandria issue 17: a 5-year, 1.7-mill replacement levy for police protection.
• Alexandria issue 18: a 5-year, 4-mill levy for current expenses.
• Buckeye Lake issue 19: a 5-year, 2.5-mill levy for police services.
• Buckeye Lake issue 20: a 5-year, 0.8-mill levy for current expenses.
• Hanover (village) issue 21: a 3-year, 1-mill replacement for fire protection.
• Hanover (village) issue 22: a 3-year, 1.5-mill replacement for fire protection.
• Hebron issue 23: a 0.5-percent income tax for general municipal operations.
• Kirkersville issue 24: a referendum on the village's contract with Southwest Licking Water.
• Utica issue 25: a 3-year, 1.7-mill renewal levy for current expenses.
• Etna Township issues 26 and 27: local options in precinct F for Rt. 40 Drive Thru, 12897-A National Road.
• Franklin Township issue 28: a 3-year, 2-mill replacement levy for roads and bridges.
• Franklin Township issue 29: a 3-year, 2-mill replacement levy for fire protection.
• Hanover Township issue 30: a 5-year, 1-mill replacement levy for fire protection.
• Hartford Township issue 31: a 5-year, 3-mill replacement levy for roads and bridges.
• Hopewell Township issue 32: a 5-year, 1-mill renewal levy for fire protection.
• Licking Township issue 33: a 3-mill continuing levy for fire protection.
• Licking Township issue 34: a local option for National Trail Country Store, 6852 National Road.
• Madison Township issue 35: a 5-year, 2.06-mill levy for fire protection.
• McKean Township issue 36: a 5-year, 2-mill levy for roads and bridges.
• Newark Township issue 37: a 5-year, 1-mill renewal levy for roads and bridges.
• Perry Township issue 38: a 3-year, 1-mill replacement levy for fire protection.
• Union Township issue 39: a 5-year, 1.5-mill replacement levy for fire protection.
• Union Township issue 40: a local option in precinct B for Speedway, 3521 Hebron Road.
• Washington Township issue 41: a 5-year, 1.75-mill renewal levy for ambulance service and emergency medical service.
• Issue 42: a 1-mill continuing levy for Career and Technology Education Centers.
• Issue 43: a 5-year, 5-mill permanent-improvement levy for Johnstown-Monroe schools.
• Issue 44: a 5-year, 1-percent income tax for Johnstown-Monroe schools.
• Issue 45: a 5-year, 1.7-mill replacement levy for Granville schools.
• Issue 46: a 5-year, 7.7-mill levy for Newark schools.
• Issue 47: a 28-year, $8.4-million bond issue for North Fork schools.
• Issue 48: a 5-year, 3.5-mill emergency levy for Northridge schools.
• Issue 49: a 28-year, $63.4-million bond issue for Southwest Licking schools.
• Overlapping issues (primary county isn't Licking): a 6.9-mill levy for Reynoldsburg schools; a 24.4-mill levy for New Albany-Plain Local schools; and a 6.9-mill levy for West Muskingum schools.
Every four years, nine county offices come up for re-election.
The Nov. 4 general election, however, will see more contested races than normal, said Dan Hayes, chairman of the Licking County Republican Party's executive committee.
"We've had great fortune in the past, having a lot of candidates running unopposed," Hayes said.
This year, the party faces several races with opposition, but at least five of those still are running unopposed.
Republican Gary Walters is being challenged by Democrat Gerald McLaughlin for Licking County Common Pleas Court clerk, and Brian Long is being challenged by Democrat Dale Burns for county recorder. Both Republicans are incumbents in those races.
Kenneth Oswalt is running unopposed for Licking County prosecuting attorney. He was challenged in the primary but won and is vying to retain the seat to which he was appointed after Bob Becker retired.
Licking County Sheriff Randy Thorp, who was appointed after Gerry Billy retired, was challenged by Billy in the primary but won.
County treasurer Michael Smith was appointed by the party after Bill Kashner died. He was opposed by a Democrat in the last election but was chosen to serve another four years.
County coroner Robert Raker is running unopposed, as is county engineer Tim Lollo, who never seems to have opposition, Hayes said.
"With certain races, it's difficult to get candidates because of the requirements," Hayes said.
A sheriff candidate, for example, must have a certain amount of supervisory experience with a law-enforcement agency.
"Sometimes it's not easy to find candidates," Hayes said.
The Republican party also has supported several candidates running in nonpartisan races. Judge Robert Hoover is one of those endorsed. He is being challenged by Geoff Judge for juvenile probate judge in Licking County Common Pleas Court.
The common-pleas domestic division is a three-way race, with Republican endorsed Richard Wright facing Paul Harmon and Vicky Christiansen.
Judge Thomas Marcelain is running unopposed in the common-pleas court's general division.
Two candidates are running for 5th District Court of Appeals judge: William Hoffman and Lianne Sefcovic.
Two seats on the Ohio Supreme Court are on the ballot. Maureen O'Connor is facing Joseph Russo, and Peter Sikora faces Evelyn Stratton.
The 9th District Ohio Board of Education has three candidates running for one seat. Michael Collins, Larry Good and William Moore.
Both candidates for Licking County commissioner have opposition. One incumbent is a Republican, Tim Bubb, who is being challenged by Democrat Doug Moreland. The other incumbent, Mark Van Buren, was appointed by the Democratic party to fill Marcia Phelps' seat in May after she was elected as Licking County Municipal Court clerk. Van Buren is being challenged by Republican Brad Feightner.
The third commissioner, Doug Smith, also is a Republican. He is not up for re-election this year.
Hayes said the Republican party also is watching the state and congressional races. In the 71st Ohio House district, incumbent Jay Hottinger is being challenged by Democrat Howard Hill, and incumbent Dan Dodd is being challenged by Republican Bill Hayes, Dan Hayes' father.
Republican Patrick Tiberi is the incumbent in the 12th congressional district race. He is being challenged by David Robinson. The seat in the 18th congressional district is held by Democrat Zack Space. He is being challenged by Republican Fred Dailey.