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Position papers: Lakemore Village Council representative

10/10/2013 - South Side Leader
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By Staff Writer

Laura Lewis Cochran (incumbent) vs. Richard Cole vs. Tracy Douglas vs. Josh Timko vs. Tom Wolfe (incumbent)

Voters living in Lakemore Village will vote for four candidates for Lakemore Village Council in the Nov. 5 General Election. The race is nonpartisan. The information provided below was submitted by the candidates, with their responses to our questions printed as submitted.


Laura Lewis Cochran (incumbent)

Why are you running for Council?

“I am running for Council because I truly care and am committed to ‘Keep Lakemore Moving Forward.’ Lakemore is moving forward by becoming financially responsible (we are half way out of fiscal emergency and should get out sooner than originally expected). We are moving forward with nuisance abatement issues and have implemented a rental registration program (to strive to keep our property values up). My efforts on Council and my commitments to the Village are to ensure that Lakemore is a safe and desirable place to live, work or maintain a business.”

What would be your top three priorities if you were elected? Why?

  1. “First and foremost, the top priority is to get out of fiscal emergency. Until that happens, it is imperative that we keep our spending under control while trying to increase commercial revenue and growth. Before coming out of fiscal emergency we need to focus on long-term financial planning goals for the Village to ensure that we are never in this situation again.
  2. “I believe we need to focus on our health and safety resources. After getting out of fiscal emergency, I would love to see our Fire Department staffed 24 hours and have the new ambulance and equipment they need to keep us safe and do their jobs properly. At that time, I would also like to revisit the status of the Police Department to see if it is financially feasible to return the Springfield/Lakemore Police Department back to the Lakemore Police Department which I feel would result in a stronger police presence in the Village.
  3. “Again, after getting out of fiscal emergency, we need to focus on our roads and water systems. Both services are not up to par due to the financial status of the Village and both are in need of major repairs. A plan for continued maintenance of these services should be designed and implemented.”


Richard Cole

Why are you running for Council?

“I am running for council to keep Lakemore moving in the right direction. We must keep making progress on the fiscal emergency front, and once we are financially in the clear, we must maintain fiscal responsibility and accountability to the people of our Village. I feel that I bring our hometown ideals and a vast array of business and legal experience to the governing table. I want to make a difference, I want to keep Lakemore fiscally sound, and I want to improve Lakemore’s infrastructure, its roads and sewers, for ourselves, for our future, and for the future of our Village. I am so proud of my hometown, and it would be such an honor and blessing to serve the people of my community and to keep Lakemore moving forward.”

What would be your top three priorities if you took office? Why?

“The fiscal emergency must remain the top priority for our Village and of its governing Council. Financial instability only jeopardizes our existence as an independent functioning Village. We as a Village must be financially sound so that we may address other pressing matters that affect each and every one of us on a day to day basis, infrastructure matters such as Lakemore’s roads and sewers, and public service matters such our fire department and paramedics. Improving our infrastructure and service matters requires funding, and little can be done on that front until we get out of our state of fiscal emergency. Lakemore is on its way to a better tomorrow, and if elected to council, I will do everything I can to make sure that we stay on that route.”


Tracy Douglas

Why are you running for Council?

“to get the Village out of fiscal emergency. The leadership continues to place the financial mistakes on the people by continuing a !% extra income tax.”

What would be your top three priorities if you took office? Why?

“Lower the personal income tax back to 2%. Fix the flooding in the village. Get back our police dept. using sound fiscal common sense.”


Josh Timko

Why are you running for Council?

“To serve the residents of Lakemore. I want to help contribute to the growth of the village and keep the village moving forward in a positive direction. Two of the four current council members are not seeking re-election, and I hope to fill one of those seats and continue to work with the Mayor and council members to expedite getting out of Fiscal Emergency.”

What would be your top three priorities if you took office? Why?

“First, I would continue the great work of the Village of Lakemore on getting out of the fiscal emergency designation ahead of schedule. Current council members have been diligently working on getting out of fiscal emergency. I think the village has done a great job servicing its citizens, while continuing to make cutbacks where possible.

“I think revenue from the newly created rental property registration program will help, and hopefully increase tax revenue and property values within the village. I think the Moving Ohio Forward funds have been put to great use, I really see the village improving. I think citizens have really stepped up this summer. Once we started seeing a couple houses come down, it seemed to spark the residents. I have seen so many people updating their homes, remodeling, building decks, being proud to call Lakemore their home again. All these things lead to higher property values, bringing in more families to the community, and created more revenue for the village.

“I think bringing in business like Dollar General, and Tractor Supply Co. has been a great help bringing in additional revenue, and will help keep moving forward to get out of the fiscal emergency. The village is over the half- way point and I think everyone is really excited with the progress that has been made. I would like to help restore the 100% tax credit back to the hard workers of our community as soon as possible. 

“Second, I would help the village find a …” [Exceeded stated word limit.]


Tom Wolfe (incumbent)

Why are you running for Council?

“My wife Nancy & I moved here seven years ago. Lakemore became our home right away. I wanted to get involved so I ran for council in 2009. Our council put in lots of time and effort to get us almost half way out of fiscal emergency. I really love the work, serving in the community and the people I work with very much. It is my hope to continue to labor for the good of Lakemore. We need more new business in the plaza and industrial park, and Edwin Shaw. Our new school will go a long way raising the bar in the community. I ask for your support to serve you for another term on Lakemore Council.”

What would be your top three priorities if you were re-elected? Why?

  1. “Finances: The General Fund must be returned to a positive balance and put money away to cope with the day to day operations ,capitol improvements etc. Also to continue to use the taxpayers money wisely. New business brings jobs and we have a few new additions to the Village, and this must continue. We are encouraged in the renewed interest in the Edwin Shaw property, as this is vital to develop new revenue source for the village. Adding new teachers to the high school will also be a good addition to the community. These improvements, I believe will continue to attract more homes and business to Lakemore.
  2. “Property Values: Similar to other parts of the country, property values have been down. To address this fact, we must continue to increase property values by removing older properties past the point of repair. It is difficult when property owners take excellent care of their properties, but have houses adjacent to them whose owners do not do the same. We have razed some properties already, yet we need to continue this process to upgrade our neighborhoods. Also, we need to continue the nuisance abatement process to encourage homeowners to maintain their homes. Our Rental Registration Program is designed to raise the quality of our rental inventory. This should improve the quality of living here in Lakemore. We are seeking grants to aid us in the costly repairs of our roads. This is necessary because we lack the capital to fund …” [Exceed stated word limit.]
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