''Well my lovely, talented, bright wife of a woman has decided that she will run for State Rep, from the 58th District, that includes Ytown, Campbell, Struthers, Coitsville, Lowellville and 95% of Austintown.''
That sentence was part of a Facebook post from state Rep. Bob Hagan, who went to the social media site last week to informally announce his wife, Michele Lapore-Hagan will run for the 58th District Ohio House seat currently held by her husband.
Bob Hagan, a Democrat, admitted Wednesday he may have ''shot the bullet'' early with Tuesday's Facebook announcement that he was headed to the Mahoning County Board of Elections to pick up her petitions and file for his wife a designation of treasurer.
''She will make a formal announcement later. Not only is she easier to look at, but she is more collegial than me. I know you will get to love her,'' Bob Hagan also wrote on his personal and political pages.
That formal announcement is set for Nov. 7, two days after the General Election.
Bob Hagan said they decided to wait until after to avoid confusion, so his Facebook page was premature, but understandable since it's his wife trying to win the House seat he's held for eight years.
Hagan cannot run again because of term limits.
Lepore-Hagan, director of the performing arts series at Youngstown State University, said she knows the challenges of the office having watched her husband do the work in the House and before that, in the Ohio Senate. However, the two have different styles: Lepore-Hagan said her husband is a ''fighter'' and she's more of a ''negotiator,'' but just as passionate.
Lepore-Hagan said she began collecting petition signatures Tuesday night at an event in Austintown, getting about 20. She needs 50 valid signatures to appear on the primary election ballot. She said she intends to get the maximum 150 signatures.
''I'm really going to hit the ground running and run hard and I'm not going to stop until Election Night and the polls close,'' Lepore-Hagan said.
Meanwhile, Bob Hagan intends to challenge U.S. Sen. Rob Portman in 2016. He made that intention known on Facebook, too, but in April.
The Ohio Supreme Court has assigned retired Portage County Municipal Court Judge Barbara Watson to hear the zoning violation case against state Rep. Tom Letson in Warren Municipal Court.
The court, once the assignment becomes official, will set Letson's case for a hearing, according to an email from Clerk of Warren Municipal Court Peggy Scott.
The case needs a visiting judge because Warren Municipal Court judges Tom Gysegem and Terry Ivanchak recused themselves to avoid a conflict in hearing the case where Letson has been an acting judge. The case was sent to Newton Falls Municipal Court, but returned, which led to the seeking out of a visiting judge.
Letson, a Democrat, is accused of using a home he owns on Foster Drive N.E. as a boarding or rooming house, which is not an acceptable use for a dwelling in that neighborhood under the city's zoning codes. The state representative, who's prevented from seeking another term because of term limits, said he rented the home to two men who are using it to help people recover from addiction. He has pleaded not guilty to the charge.