election 2020

MANSFIELD -- Races for the statehouse highlight the March 17 primary ballot for Richland County voters.

The deadline to file petitions for the election with the Richland County Board of Elections was Wednesday at 4 p.m.

The board of elections will meet Thursday at 3 p.m. to certify the nominating petitions.

"We do not have all the Federal, State & District candidates yet from the State or the most populous counties," elections Director Paulette Hankins said. "We will update our list as we receive the certifications for those candidates and any state issues."

The deadline for write-in candidates for the primary is Jan. 6. 

The deadline for Independent candidates to file is March 16. Any Independent candidates would only appear on the 2020 General Election ballot.

Five Republicans will square off for Ohio's 22nd District Senate seat being vacated by Sen. Larry Obhof, a Medina resident who is prevented from seeking another term due to term limits.

The district includes Richland, Ashland and Medina counties, as well as a portion of Holmes County.

Primary voters will choose among current State Rep. Mark Romanchuk (R-Ontario), Brunswick Mayor Ron Falconi and newcomer Cory Branham of Crestline. Two others in the GOP field are Timothy Hoven from Brunswick and Michael Reynolds from Wadsworth.

The winner will meet Democrat Steve Johnson of Ashland in the November general election.

There is also a Republican party race to replace Romanchuk in the Ohio House 2nd District seat, representing Richland County.

Current Richland County Commissioner Marilyn John of Shelby will compete for votes against Shelby City Council member Nathan Martin. The winner will face Democrat Sam Grady from Mansfield in November. 

Incumbent Richland County Commissioner Darrell Banks, a Republican from Bellville, is unopposed in the March primary and no Democrats filed to oppose him. 

Fellow incumbent Republican Tony Vero from Lexington has a primary challenge from David Morganstern, also from Lexington. No Democrats filed in the race.

Richland County Prosecutor Gary Bishop, Clerk of Courts Linda Frary, Sheriff Steve Sheldon, Recorder Sarah Davis, Engineer Adam Gove and Coroner Daniel Burwell all filed for re-election in the Republican primary and all are unopposed in March. No Democrats filed in those races.

Treasurer Bart Hamilton is unopposed for re-election in the Democratic Party in the primary. No Republicans filed in the race.

Richland County Common Pleas Court Judge Phil Naumoff, who won the race in 2018 to complete the unexpired term of Judge James DeWeese, is unopposed in the Democratic primary and there are no Republicans in the field.

The are two Democrats vying for the Richland County Probate Court judge position -- Joseph Jerger of Ontario and Kirsten Pscholka-Gartner from Lexington. Republican Kelly Badnell is unopposed in the primary race.

Richland County Juvenile Court Judge Steve McKinley of Bellville, appointed earlier this year to replace retiring Judge Ron Spon, is unopposed in the primary.  Democrat Rollie Harper of Mansfield is unopposed in the Democratic Party primary.

Edith Gilliland of Lucas had taken out petitions to run in the Democratic primary for juvenile court judge. She said on Wednesday she has decided to run as an independent in November.

U.S. Rep. Bob Gibbs of Lakeville, a Republican, has filed for re-election in the 7th District.

Both Republicans and Democrats will also elect party central committee members.

There will also be four tax/issue questions on the primary ballot:

-- The Village of Bellville seeks renewal of a 3-mill, 5-year tax levy for current expenses.

-- The Cypress Hill Winery, 51 E. 4th St. in Mansfield, seeks approval for Sunday sales of wine, mixed beverages and spirituous liquor between 10 a.m. and midnight.

-- The 7-Eleven store, 2264 S. Main St. in Mansfield, seeks approval for Sunday sales of wine and mixed beverages between 10 a.m. and midnight.

-- Portions of two Richland County townships will vote on an 0.25 percent, 25-year income tax request from the South Central Local School District for permanent improvements and a 4.95-mill, 25-year bond issue to improve district buildings and facilities.

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City editor. 30-year plus journalist. Husband. Father of 3 grown sons and also a proud grandpa. Prior military journalist in U.S. Navy, Ohio Air National Guard. -- Favorite quote: "Where were you when the page was blank?"