Athens Council-At-Large Seats And Trimble School Levy On May 7 Ballot

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Tuesday marks the May primary election, but only voters in the city of Athens and the Trimble School District will have topics to vote on.

The only contested race in the primary election in the city of Athens is for the three at-large Athens City Council seats. There are six Democratic candidates vying for the three available seats.

At-large candidates include incumbents Steve Patterson and Chris Knisely, former Councilman Michael McSteen, massage therapist Jennifer Cochran, Athens County Historical Society and Museum Executive Director Ron Luce, and Avalanche Pizza manager and local DJ Michael Bart.

Current at-large Councilman Elahu Gosney is not seeking another term.

According to the Athens County Board of Elections, the three Democratic at-large candidates selected in Tuesday’s election will face independent candidate Troy Gregorino in the November general election.

Gregorino, who resides on Central Avenue, could not be reached before The Messenger’s news deadline on Monday.

The deadline for independent candidates to file for the November election was 4 p.m. on Monday. Gregorino was the sole independent candidate.

All other Athens City Council members are running unopposed in the primary. Those members are 1st Ward representative Kent Butler, 2nd Ward representative Jeff Risner, 3rd Ward representative Michele Papai, 4th Ward representative Chris Fahl and Council President Jim Sands. All current members of Council are Democrats.

Athens City Treasurer Mary Ann McClure, a Democrat, is also running unopposed for re-election.

Voters in the Trimble Local School District will determine the outcome of a 5-mill permanent improvement levy — which failed in November as 53.3 percent voted against it.

The levy would generate about $190,180 per year for the district.

If passed, the continuous levy would remain in effect until the school board notifies the county auditor that the funds are no longer needed.

As The Messenger previously reported, school board members have said the levy is needed to replace the deteriorating roof over the Jacksonville schoolhouse where the elementary and middle school are located. The district would use the funds for buses, textbooks, upgrades to school security features and the district’s heating, ventilation and cooling systems.

The polls will be open on Tuesday from 6:30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.