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Toledo, Ohio & Lake Erie

The Press Newspaper

The Press Newspaper

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A familiar face was the top vote getter in the Oregon City Council race while a long-time incumbent was defeated for re-election on Nov. 3.

Sandy Bihn, executive director of the Lake Erie Waterkeepers Association, received the most votes and was elected to a four year term on council. She was one of eight candidates vying for four seats.

Bihn, of Bayshore Road, was previously elected to council in 1983 and 2005. She was also elected clerk auditor in 1987.On Tuesday, she received 3,205 votes, or 15 percent, of the vote, according to unofficial results from the Lucas County board of elections.

Bihn, 68, attributed her win, in part, to her high profile work on water issues, particularly in the wake of the three day tap water ban due to a toxic algal bloom in Lake Erie last year.

“People have grown to know me,” said Bihn, who also worked as the city’s finance director in the 1990s. “I worked hard on the water issues. Many people wished me well. The feedback I was getting is that they were happy I was running and they thanked me for my work on the water issues. They appreciated it.”

Bihn, a long time environmental activist, spent years raising awareness of algae in the lake way before the water crisis struck last year.

“The water issue is huge,” she said. “I spend 20 to 40 hours a week on average on water issues. The lake has become very demanding. People here do care about the lake and the water. It was good to hear that the vote for me reflected that. Government, business and environmental groups need to work to network and provide information so the lake gets healed quickly and with accountability.” She is looking forward to participating on the city’s upcoming shoreline project as well as fostering “something in recreation beyond competitive sports.”

“There is a dip on the road on Bayshore that is a hazard and it needs to be addressed,” she added.

She also said she is concerned about kids hanging out late at night disrupting neighborhoods. “We have to work on taking care of that issue,” she said. “We also have to make sure the fire department gets what it needs as far as equipment and fire hoses.”

Steve Hornyak received the second highest vote, with 3,116 votes, or 14.96 percent of the vote. Hornyak, 47, is a division manager of Oldcastle Business Management. He previously served on the Oregon Board of Education from 2004-2008.

Councilwoman Kathleen Pollauf was re-elected to a second term with the third highest vote. She received 2,935 votes, or 14.09 percent of the vote. Pollauf, 49, is self-employed as a massage therapist at Massage Therapy, LLC.

Councilman Timothy J. Zale, 49, finished in fourth place and was re-elected to a second term. He received 2,784 votes, or 13.37 percent. Zale is a retired Oregon police officer.

Peach defeated
Long time incumbent Councilman Jerry Peach received 2,743 votes, or 13.17 percent of the vote. The fifth place finish ends Peach’s 14 years on council.

“I am somewhat disappointed in the outcome,” said Peach the day after the election. “It was an unusual election with statewide issues 2 and 3 on the ballot. It brought out people who may not have voted otherwise. It was not the only thing. Elections are just snapshots on any given election day and anything can happen.”

Peach, the only Republican on council, said he was proud of the fact that he only missed one council meeting in all the years he was on council.

“I took being on council very seriously and I have been very dedicated. It is time to take a day off,” he said.

Peach, 67, said he does not know if he will ever run for public office again.

“Who knows the future?”

He leaves office with a “first class police force and fire department and the city never has been in better financial shape.”

“I am sure the new council is going to work well with the administration and I am leaving the city in good hands,” said Peach, a former teacher and farm owner.

Former City Councilman Bill Myers, a farmer, came in sixth place at 2,392, or 11.48 percent of the vote.

Incumbent Councilman Joshua Hughes, an attorney, came in seventh place, with 2,380 votes, and 11.43 percent of the vote. He was seeking a second term on council.

Corey Greenblat, the youngest of the eight candidates, came in eighth place with 1,273 or 6.11 percent of the votes. Greenblat, 20, attends Ohio State University.

 

abortion

The Ohio legislature has passed a bill that would ban abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected. In practice, that would make abortion illegal after six weeks.
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