Wednesday, November 6th, 2019
Celina council gains new face
By William Kincaid
CELINA - Two incumbents and a newcomer secured three open seats on Celina City Council on Election Day.
Veteran legislators Mike Sovinski, a Republican, and Calvin "June" Scott, a Democrat, and first-time candidate Eric Lochtefeld, a Democrat, emerged victorious in a highly competitive four-way race for the three at-large spots. Political neophyte Richard "Rich" McNaughton came up just short of picking up a council seat.
Scott came in on top with 1,104 votes, followed by Sovinski with 1,089, and Lochtefeld with 1,017. McNaughton received 923 votes, according to Mercer County Board of Elections' final unofficial results.
"I thank everybody for voting for me," Scott said. "There's a lot of support for city council, for all the candidates."
Scott said the two first-time candidates gave it a great shot, with one of them being elected.
"Hopefully, I can represent the public the best I can," Scott said.
Lochtefeld was in an equally joyful mood upon learning of the election results.
"I'm just really excited to get started, and I'm looking forward to shaping Celina's future," he told newspaper.
Sovinski could not be reached for comment.
Scott, 67, is serving his 16th year on city council. The retired Celina High School teacher has two children and lives with his wife, Ruth, at 1234 Brooke Ave.
He had said he wants to push to see the city's additional 0.5% income tax be used toward its maximum potential, noting the revenue has been well spent on improving city streets.
Sovinski, 71, will have served eight-and-a-half years on council at the end of the year. He and his wife, Kathy, live at 628 N. Ash St., Celina, and have a daughter. Sovinski is retired and does occasional work with Choice One Engineering in Sidney.
He had said he supports making the 0.5% income tax "more permanent." Such a move would furnish a reliable source of revenue to pay for projects outright or to cover the long-term costs of borrowing, he had said.
Lochtefeld, 25, lives at 645 W. Fulton St., Celina. He's an information technology specialist with the Mercer County District Library and owner of Lochte Technology, which specializes in web design, computer networking, animated lighting, photography and other services.
To help halt the flight of young adults, Lochtefeld had said he would start a fellowship program as a partnership among local businesses, organizations and local government that would offer students paid jobs during the summer.