By DENISE GRANT
Findlay Auditor Jim Staschiak has submitted candidacy petitions to seek re-election as auditor, ending speculation that he might run for mayor.
The Hancock County Republican Party has also announced it is accepting resumes from people who want to be appointed to complete the unexpired term of Findlay Mayor Lydia Mihalik, which ends Dec. 31.
Whoever is appointed mayor would have to seek election if they want to serve a full four-year term, beginning in 2020. The GOP is expected to make that appointment in late February.
Resumes and supporting information must be mailed no later than Feb. 1 to: GOP Headquarters, Attn.: Linda Casey, 113 W. Crawford St., Findlay, Ohio 45840.
Candidates will be contacted by a Candidate Review Committee to set up interviews. Casey can be contacted at email@example.com or 419-420-1982 with any questions.
Mayor Mihalik is expected to resign at the end of the day Sunday. She has accepted a position as director of the Ohio Development Services Agency under Gov.-elect Mike DeWine.
Once Mihalik resigns, City Council President Ron Monday will serve as acting mayor until the GOP’s decision is made.
Staschiak said Wednesday he wants to focus on the auditor’s office, where he said he can do the most good for the city. He filed his candidacy petitions with the Hancock County Board of Elections on Wednesday afternoon. His petitions contained 85 signatures. A total of 50 signatures are required.
In March 2011, Staschiak was appointed city auditor by the Republican Party after former Auditor Robert Sprague was appointed as state representative. Staschiak was then elected to a four-year term as auditor in November 2011, and was re-elected in 2015.
Earlier, Staschiak served as city treasurer, a part-time post, from 2001 until April 2005, when then-Mayor Tony Iriti asked him to serve as service director, a post he held until September 2006.
He later served as treasurer again from 2009 to 2011.
All Findlay city offices are up for election this year, including mayor, auditor, law director, all 10 City Council seats, and the position of council president. The filing deadline for the May 7 primary election is Feb. 6.
Findlay 1st Ward Councilwoman Holly Frische has filed candidacy petitions to seek the Republican Party’s nomination for mayor in the May primary election. Frische filed her petitions Friday, one day after Mihalik announced her resignation.
Frische was elected to represent the city’s 1st Ward in 2013. She has been re-elected twice.
So far, Staschiak and Frische are the only candidates to file petitions for any city office in the primary.
Candidates seeking the position of mayor, auditor, law director, council president or councilman-at-large must file petitions with valid signatures of 50 Findlay residents. Ward seats on City Council require only 25 signatures.
According to an unofficial list maintained by the elections board, a handful of current Findlay Council members have picked up candidacy petitions, but none has filed petitions.
The list includes: Dennis Hellmann, 2nd Ward; Jim Niemeyer, 6th Ward; Grant Russel, at-large; Tom Shindledecker, at-large; Jim Slough, 4th Ward; and council President Monday.
Fifth Ward Councilman John Harrington is circulating petitions to challenge Monday for the Republican nomination for council president.
Two city residents have taken out petitions for Frische’s 1st Ward seat, including Angela Deboskey and Charles Haas Jr.
Joshua Palmer is circulating petitions for the 7th Ward council seat.
Nada Jordan has picked up petitions for an at-large council seat, according to the unofficial list.
So far, no Democrats have indicated that they have taken out petitions for city offices.