MEDINA — Nearly every City Council member will have to gear up for a re-election bid this year.
Six of the seven members of Council said they will likely run for their respective seats, including Council President John Coyne, At-Large Councilman Bill Lamb, Ward 1 Councilman Bob Starcher, Ward 2’s Dennie Simpson, Ward 3’s Eric Heffinger and Ward 4’s Jim Shields.
The only one who won’t be on the ballot is At-Large Councilman Paul Rose.
“The potential is there (for a big change),” Medina Mayor Dennis Hanwell said. “I’m not wishing for that. We have a great relationship between Council and the administration.”
Hanwell said that team approach makes for the best form of city government, something that makes other cities envious.
Heffinger was sworn in July 9 after the resignation of Mark Kolesar. Kolesar’s unexpired, four-year term ends Dec. 31, 2021, but according to the city’s charter, Heffinger needs to run for election this year.
Starcher was appointed Nov. 13 after the resignation of Laura Parnell-Cavey. Like Heffinger’s, he stepped into an unexpired term.
Both newcomers plan to run for re-election.
“I’m having too much fun,” Starcher said.
That leaves six Council seats up in the air, thought to be an all-time high.
“I’ve never seen (that many),” Hanwell said.
Coyne said everyone on Council has indicated they are running for re-election.
“It’s everybody, but Paul (Rose),” the Council president said.
Coyne has been on Council since 1998. He said he’d never reach his grandfather’s tenure of 54 years on Council.
Simpson said he wants to come back for one more term.
“I still enjoy it,” he said.
He said he wants to see how the parking deck and the economic development along West Liberty Street turns out before taking a step back.
Shields said he’s finishing up his 17th year on Council. He wants to remain on Council as long as Hanwell stays on as mayor.
“We have a good thing going (in the city),” he said. “I enjoy being part of it.”
Shields said he loves the collaboration between the city and school district. Shields is human resources director for Medina Schools. He said he believes his dual role is a value to both entities.