Sheriff, commissioner seat contested in Fulton County

Thatcher hopes to become first woman commissioner

By JACK PALMER Published:

WAUSEON -- Contested races for sheriff and commissioner highlight Tuesday's election ballot in Fulton County.

The sheriff's race pits two veteran law enforcement officers against each other -- Chief Deputy Roy Miller and Wauseon Police Chief Keith Torbet. The winner will replace seven-term Sheriff Darrell Merillat, who is not seeking re-election.

Miller defeated Delta Police Chief Rick Sluder in the Republican primary election in March while Torbet filed as an Independent.

The other contested county office is the commissioner's term beginning Jan. 3, with Independent Becky Thatcher of Wauseon challenging three-term Republican incumbent Paul Barnaby of Metamora. If elected, Thatcher would become the first woman commissioner in county history.

Candidates for eight other county offices are unopposed in the November election. Seven are incumbents while Republican Rick Yoder is unopposed to replace Coroner Harry Murtiff, who did not file for another term.

Four tax issues, three local options and one village charter question will also appear on Tuesday's ballot.

The only additional levy request, filed by the village of Metamora, involves a .5-mill, five-year levy for parks and recreation.

Fayette village voters will decide two issues -- a 2.9-mill, five-year replacement levy for current expenses; and a 2-mill, five-year replacement levy request for parks and recreation. The other tax issue is a .6-mill, five-year renewal levy for fire and EMS services in Franklin Township.

Delta village voters will determine the fate of a proposed charter amendment regarding mayor and council salaries. The amendment establishes the mayor's salary at $3,000 and council salaries at $3,000. It also provides that these salaries can be changed only by ordinance adopted by no less than two-thirds of the members of council, and not become effective until the next election for open positions.

Voters in three locations face alcoholic beverage sale options.

Archbold precinct 1 is being asked to approve the sale of beer between 10 a.m.-midnight on Sunday at the Archbold Sunoco convenience store, 1500 S. Defiance St.

Voters in Fulton County's Gorham precinct will consider two requests from Anchor Bay Carry Out & Pub, located at 12328-30 County Road 27, West Unity. If approved, they would allow the sale of spiritous liquors generally, as well as the sale of beer on Sunday between 11 a.m.-midnight.

County voters -- depending upon where they live -- will help decide three contested Ohio Statehouse races.

Those in the southeast part of the county will chose between Republican Lynn Wachtmann and Democrat John Vanover for state representative in the new 81st House District which also covers Henry, Putnam and Williams counties. Remaining voters will decide between Republican Barbara Sears and Democrat Jeff Bunck for the new 47th House District.

Wachtmann is the incumbent in the 75th House District while Sears currently represents the 46th District in western Lucas County.

Republican incumbent Cliff Hite is unopposed in his bid for an unexpired two-year term in Ohio's 1st Senate District, which includes the same southeast portion of the county which is part of the new 81st House District. Voters in the remainder of the county will decide between Republican Randy Gardner and Democrat Jeffery Bretz for the Ohio 2nd Senate District. GOP incumbent Mark Wagoner is not seeking re-election.

U.S. 5th Congressional District voters will choose from among Republican incumbent Robert Latta, Democrat Angela Zimmann and Libertarian Eric Eberly.

Candidates for several other state and federal offices, including president and U.S senate, will also be on the ballot.

The complete list of candidates and issues is as follows:

County offices

(elect one)


(term commencing 1/2/13)

Bill Rufenacht (R)


(term commencing 1/3/13)

Becky Thatcher (I)

Paul Barnaby (R-inc.)

Prosecuting Attorney

Scott Haselman (R-inc.)

Clerk of Courts

Paul MacDonald (R-inc.)


Roy Miller (R)

Keith Torbet (I)


Sandra Barber (R-inc.)


Beverly Schlosser (R-inc.)


Frank Onweller (R-inc.)


Rick Yoder (R)

County Court Judge

Jeffrey Robinson (inc.)

State office

1st Senate District

(elect one)

Cliff Hite (R-inc.)

2nd Senate District

(elect one)

Jeff Bretz (D)

Randy Gardner (R)

47th House District

(elect one)

Jeff Bunck (D)

Barbara Sears (R)

81st House District

(elect one)

John Vanover (D)

Lynn Wachtmann (R)

Ohio Supreme Court Justice

(term commencing 1/1/13)

(elect one)

Mike Skindell

Terrence O'Donnell (inc.)

Ohio Supreme

Court Justice

(term commencing 1/2/13)

(elect one)

William O'Neill

Robert Cupp (inc.)

Ohio Supreme

Court Justice

(unexpired term ending 12/31/14)

(elect one)

Yvette McGee Brown (inc.-appt.)

Sharon Kennedy

6th District

Court of Appeals Judge

(elect one each party)

James Jensen

District 1 State

Board of Education

Stanley Jackson

Ann Jacobs (inc.)

Federal office


(elect one)

Barack Obama (D-inc.)

Mitt Romney (R)

Steward Alexander (Socialist)

Virgil Goode (Constitution)

Richard Duncan (I)

Gary Johnson (Lib.)

Jill Stein (Green)

U.S. Senator

(elect one)

Sherrod Brown (D-inc.)

Josh Mandel (R)

Scott Rupert (I)

U.S. Representative

5th District

(elect one each party)

Angela Zimmann (D)

Bob Latta (R-inc.)

Eric Eberly (Lib.)

Tax, ballot issues

Delta Village: a proposed charter amendment regarding mayor and council salaries

Fayette Village: a 2-mill, five-year property tax replacement levy for parks and recreation

Fayette Village: a 2.9-mill, five-year property tax replacement levy for current operating expenses

Metamora Village: an additional .5-mill, five-year property tax levy for parks and recreation

Franklin Township: a .6-mill, five-year property tax renewal levy for fire and EMS services

Gorham Township: a request for the sale of spiritous liquor for Anchor Bay Carryout & Pub in West Unity

Gorham Township: a request for the sale of beer on Sundays from 11 a.m.-midnight for Anchor Bay Carryout & Pub, West Unity

Archbold Village, precinct 1: a request for the sale of beer on Sundays from 10 a.m.-midnight for Archbold Sunoco convenience store

State Issue 1: A proposal to convene a constitutional convention to revise, alter or amend the Ohio Constitution.

State Issue 2: A proposal to create a state-funded commission to draw legislative and congressional districts.

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