LORAIN — Democratic incumbent Joe Koziura — who has been involved in city politics in various ways for decades, including as the city mayor — lost his at-large seat on City Council on Tuesday night.
In a race in which the top three candidates move on to November — and where they face almost certain victory because no Republicans filed against them — Koziura finished fourth behind incumbent Mary Springowski, Tony Dimacchia, and incumbent Mitch Fallis.
In the nine-candidate field, Springowski was the top vote-getter with 2,064 votes, or 19 percent of the vote, while Dimacchia had 1,827 votes, or 17 percent, and Fallis, 1,545 votes, or 14 percent. Koziura collected 1,281 votes, or 12 percent of the vote.
Dimacchia, a longtime member of the Lorain school board, said he was excited to step into his new role on Council next year, but he doesn’t plan to leave his dedication to Lorain Schools behind.
“(I’m) a little torn because being on the (Board of Education) for the last 12 years and we’ve done a lot of great work and I’m going to continue to do that work because I believe the city should be focused in the school system. That’s my only dilemma in all of this.”
As Board of Education president, Dimacchia was vocal against House Bill 70, the state takeover law that allowed for Lorain’s Academic Distress Commission and the installment of CEO David Hardy. He has continued to voice those concerns after becoming vice president earlier this year.
He will serve out the rest of his term as Board of Education vice president, before taking his Council seat in January.
He went on to offer his congratulations to everyone else who had won in the race.
“It was a crazy race when you’ve got nine candidates running for three spots — you just don’t know what’s going to happen or how it’s going to happen, and I’m just excited to take on a new venture with the city.”
Fallis said he was looking forward to serving the city for another two years, as his fifth term on Council.
Despite the close results, Fallis said he wasn’t concerned as his team put a good re-election campaign together.
“We got the message out and talked to the voters, so I didn’t have any concerns whatsoever,” he said.
Springowski said she was humbled at the chance to continue to serve Lorain residents.
“I’m so grateful to the voters in the city of Lorain for their faith in me, and I will do my best to live up to their expectations and their hopes of what a representative of the people truly is. Congratulations to all the other candidates who have won, and I hope that we will all work together to move the city forward.”
Koziura could not be reached for comment Tuesday evening. He has served as councilman at large for three terms and previously was mayor from 1996 to 1999, city auditor and an Ohio state representative.
- Several line up to be Lorain's next mayor
- Supporters, critics testify about state takeovers of schools (UPDATED)
- Tensions high at Lorain Schools Academic Distress Commission meeting
- Jack Bradley gets mayor's slot on November ballot; Tony Dimacchia appointed to council (VIDEO)
- Election guide: Lorain council at-large
- Lorain councilmen Arroyo, Faga aren't seeking re-election
- Primary election shapes up