Race to City Council

City of Powell

McKenna Christy, Co-editor-in-chief

(This is the beginning of a series on the Patriot Press that will delve into voting on a local and national scale)

As election day is quickly approaching there are three available seats on the Powell City Council. With incumbents Council member Dan Swartwout and Mayor Jon Bennehoof campaigning to keep their seats, they are met with four candidates looking to be elected. 

Candidates Heather Karr, Nicole Scott, Christopher Shear, and Gary Yashko are all running to improve Powell, but there has not been much advocacy shown through residents of Powell- who have not gone out of their way to show immense opposition or appreciation to this slate of contenders. This unlively City Council Race could be credited to the vague differences in each candidates’ policy matters. 

The way in which each of the candidates are proposing their platforms is noticeably what makes them stand out from each other. Candidates Karr and Yashko take clear stances on current community conflicts on campaign websites while the other candidates have taken to Facebook with little clarity on their agenda. 

However, all the candidates have in some way addressed Powell’s infrastructure, tax structure, traffic congestion, EMS and fire, and its relationship with Liberty Township to be impacting citizens the most. Candidate Karr believes citizen participation should happen through every stage of developmental processes in order for these new developments to be beneficial to all residents. From Candidate Yashko’s experience as a Powell citizen of 20 years he sees the need for sidewalks and roads to be fixed quickly in an effort to save City money. 

For a few of these candidates, running for local office has been a long time goal. Candidate Karr mentioned that she was going to wait until her children were in college to run, but while she was encouraging others to run for City Council it sparked her motive to campaign for this election. Candidate Yashko had been influenced by current Council member Brian Lorenz who had been encouraging him to run for the past few years. He also mentioned he needed to “get off the sidelines and get into the game.” 

Anyone who is unsatisfied with the current state of Powell and wants a change in authority could benefit from becoming educated on the new candidates running for Powell City Council, and should be looking to vote on November 5th. 

http://c3.thevoterguide.org/v/columbus19/race-detail.do?id=16322892 (Check out this vote guide created by The Columbus Dispatch to learn more about each of the candidates).

Disclaimer: Candidates Heather Karr and Gary Yashko were the only two to respond to an interview with the Patriot Press.