May primary election results

(Posted May 3, 2023)

By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor

For two of the three levies on the May 2 primary ballot in Madison County, the vote tallies are very close.

The unofficial results released by the Madison County Board of Elections on Election Night show Jefferson Township’s fire levy passing by eight votes (397-389) and the city of London’s levy for fire and EMS services failing by six votes (551-557). Madison-Plains Local Schools’ bond issue for school construction failed 860-1,079.

The Board of Elections will run the official canvass on May 15. Those final tallies will include votes that were not counted on Election Day, including absentee ballots postmarked by the deadline that came in after Election Day and any provisional ballots. The Board of Elections stated they have 30 outstanding absentee ballots.

“We’re optimistic there are still votes out there we can pick up and put (our levy) in the winning category,” said London Mayor Patrick Closser. “It’s a very close race. We just appreciate everybody’s hard work during the process to try to get this passed.”

The city’s ballot issue is a request for a 0.25 percent income tax increase to provide additional funding for the fire and EMS department.

As for what the city will do if the levy fails, Closser said the city administration is finalizing a plan to present to council.

“We want to see how the votes turn out and also how close it is. We will take that into consideration as we are finalizing our plans to move forward,” Closser said.

Jefferson Township Fire Chief Chris Snyder is holding his breath, hoping the township’s request for an additional tax levy of 3.5 mills for operational expenses stays in the win column following the official canvass.

“It’s going to be close. We owe a lot of gratitude to the citizens committee that was put together this time to run the campaign. We are extremely grateful for them and everybody who’s been involved in the campaign,” Snyder said.

Should the levy pass, the fire department will be able to start seeking equipment updates and other improvements they have postponed due to funding uncertainties, he added.

Madison-Plains Local Schools asked for support of a $63 million bond levy to construct a new school to serve all of the district’s students in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade. The facility was to replace the district’s existing school buildings.

About the levy loss, Superintendent Chad Eisler said, “While we are disappointed in this evening’s election results, we will continue with the good work we are doing and keep moving forward. We will continue our efforts with regard to our buildings and hope to win the community’s support in the near future.”

A liquor option for the Plain City West precinct passed 63-20. Mi Sombrero Express Inc., 900 Village Blvd., submitted the option which allows for Sunday sales of wine, mixed beverages, and spiritous liquors.

London elected offices
In the London mayor’s race, incumbent Patrick Closser won the Republican nomination over opponent Henry Comer with a vote tally of 533-430.

In six of the other city races, opponents ran opposed: Joshua Peters for council president; John Stahl for an at-large council seat; Andrew Hitt for the Ward 1 council seat; Richard Hays for the Ward 2 council seat; Kenna Combs for auditor; and Jennifer Hitt for law director.

No one filed petitions to run in the May election for the Ward 3 and Ward 4 council seats. Stahl was the only person who ran for one of the three at-large council seats.

Several individuals filed to run as independents for London races in the Nov. 8 general election. The deadline to file as an independent was May 1. They include: Thomas Boyd for mayor; Michael Norman for the Ward 3 council seat; Eric Clark and Shannon Treynor for the Ward 4 council seat; and Gregory S. Eades and Donald Trent McDaniels for the at-large council seats.

The deadline to file as a write-in candidate for the Nov. 8 election is 4 p.m. Aug. 28.

Voter turnout
Of the 18,319 registered voters in Madison County, 4,033 cast ballots in the May 2 election. That amounts to a turnout of 22 percent.

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