The Genoa Township Board of Trustees used the comment portion of its meeting Wednesday to reflect on the results of last week’s election.
On Nov. 5, Renee Vaughan defeated Larry King for trustee to succeed outgoing Trustee Frank Dantonio. The tally was 5,087 (72%) for Vaughan, and King received 1,945 votes (28%). Her term begins Jan. 1. Although Vaughan was not present for the Nov. 13 meeting, she was congratulated by the trustees.
Speaking first was Frank Dantonio, who did not seek re-election and whose term ends Dec. 31.
“However, until that time, I will continue to listen to Genoa’s taxpayers,” Dantonio said of the remainder of his term. “The so-called vocal minority elected Renee Vaughan to be my replacement. Renee prevailed, and won by being open and honest, and her willingness to represent the voices of Genoa’s taxpayers.”
“I look forward to working with Renee and would like to congratulate her as well,” said Trustee Karl Gebhardt. He also thanked King for running and encouraged people to run in the future.
“We need to continue to have good people run for public office at all levels,” Gebhardt said.
“I also offered to meet with her (Vaughan) prior to her taking office if she should have any questions for me at that time,” said Trustee Connie Goodman. “I look forward to working with her in the best interest of Genoa Township residents.”
A roads and bridges levy was approved in the township (not including Westerville) with 4,259 votes for (58%) and 3,143 against (42%).
“I also want to congratulate the residents of the township on the passage of the road levy,” Gebhardt said. “I think the residents appreciate the work our crews do, they understand the needs. I want to thank the Genoa taxpayers for their continued support of our programs. I also want to thank Bob (Mathews, the maintenance director) and his staff for doing the kind of job that makes it easier for our residents to vote for a tax increase, which is never easy to do, and which we as elected officials don’t like to do, but on occasion it has to be done.”
Fiscal Officer Patrick Myers, who ran unopposed, was also praised by Goodman.
“He deserves congratulations for the great work he has done to our township,” she said. “He keeps us on track financially, makes sure we account for every penny, and has also helped this past year work through some uncharted territory with our police bond levy (that passed).”
In other business, the Genoa Police Department said it would be donating 20 missing bicycles it was holding to a charity. Dantonio asked why they didn’t sell them on the website auction.gov, and Chief Gary Honeycutt said they weren’t trying to make money.
Administrator Paul Wise discussed general fund appropriations for 2020. The fund includes staff salaries, the parks and recreation department and capital expenses. Among the items discussed was that the township doesn’t have funding to replace broken playground equipment, so they repair it. In addition, sealing and re-striping the township’s basketball courts is considered a capital expense.
Gebhardt suggested seeking more grant funding in 2020. “We’re leaving a lot of money on the table,” he said.
Gary Budzak may be reached at 740-413-0906 or on Twitter @GaryBudzak.