Reynoldsburg News

Reynoldsburg City Council race

Three Republicans, one Democrat seek three seats

By ThisWeek Community News  • 

Reynoldsburg voters will choose Nov. 5 among four candidates running for three at-large Reynoldsburg City Council seats.

The candidates are incumbents Barth Cotner and Chris Long, former council member Preston Stearns and resident Daniel Skinner.

Cotner was the top vote-getter in the May 7 Republican primary election, with Long next and Skinner coming in third.

Stearns is the lone Democratic candidate.

Cotner is owner of Cotner Funeral Home and has served on Reynoldsburg City Council since his appointment in 2009.

He is involved in the Reynoldsburg-Pickerington Rotary Club, the Reynoldsburg Area Chamber of Commerce, the Kiwanis Club, Reynoldsburg Republican Club and other local organizations.

Cotner is a lifelong Reynoldsburg resident and said the city "has much to be proud of."

"My roots in Reynoldsburg allow me to have a unique perspective of where we have been," he said. "As a business owner and father of two young children, I have the passion to help shape the direction of where we are going."

Long is manager of the Ohio Development Services Agency. He is a graduate of Reynoldsburg High School and served in the United States Air Force.

He was elected to Reynoldsburg City Council in 2009.

Long has served on the board of drectors of the Reynoldsburg Community Association, is a member of the Reynoldsburg Masonic Lodge, the American Legion Post 490 and the Columbus-Central Ohio 912 Project, among others.

He said the city should focus on "economic development and redevelopment."

"Reynoldsburg government should always work together to ensure that we are doing the best for the citizens, whether it is protecting their tax dollars, economic development projects that bring jobs to our community, or rebuilding our infrastructure," he said.

Long and his wife, Sandy, have six children.

Skinner is an attorney and co-founder of a law firm.

He has worked as a judicial extern for former Ohio Supreme Court Justice Evelyn Lundberg Stratton and as interim bailiff and summer law clerk for Montgomery County Common Pleas Court Judge Gregory F. Singer. He also has served on the Reynoldsburg Planning Commission.

Skinner said his experience as an attorney, working for public servants, serving his fellow students in student government in college and his current position on the planning commission have been good preparation for a council seat.

"I have a heart to serve my fellow citizens," he said. "As an unmarried young person, I have the time, energy and commitment needed to fulfill the job responsibilities in a thorough and dedicated manner."

Stearns was a skilled trades supervisor who retired after 32 years with General Motors.

He served on Reynoldsburg City Council from 2004 to 2008, representing Ward 1.

Since his term ended, Stearns has served as a trustee of the Franklin County Tax Incentive Review Council and as chairman of the Reynoldsburg Ward Boundary Commission.

Stearns said he has a "firm, insightful understanding of the various concerns facing Reynoldsburg families each day, including our need for better education and after-school programs, improvements in public safety and law enforcement and sound fiscal policies and responsible use of scarce resources."

He and his wife, Carolyn, have three children and four grandchildren.

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