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Choice most important in all elections

We think voters always should have a choice for every elected office.

That’s why a few recent unrelated decisions make us hopeful for some upcoming elections in Trumbull County.

Often very specific qualifications place great limits on who may run for certain posts. The Trumbull County Engineer’s seat is one of those. In Trumbull County, for example, only a handful of licensed professional engineers meet the state-imposed qualifications to hold the elected countywide seat. Those limitations often mean the race for that seat either goes unchallenged or the same candidate holds the seat for repeated terms.

Early signs indicate, however, that voters may have a choice in the upcoming Democratic primary for Trumbull County engineer. Former Trumbull County Engineer David DeChristofaro has announced plans to challenge incumbent Randy Smith.

Certainly, we expect past controversies to rear up again in this race, and we also suspect the race may not be pretty.

Still, we believe strongly that competition always raises the bar among political opponents by seeking answers about competency, goals and plans. We hope the race brings the best out of both of these candidates, and that the campaign season remains positive without mudslinging and unnecessary negative campaigning.

NEWTON FALLS COUNCIL

Another upcoming election issue involves two council seats in Newton Falls village.

We are very pleased to see that upon further review, the Trumbull County Board of Elections agreed last week that elections to fill unexpired terms on two Newton Falls council seats should be held next year, rather than waiting until 2021, as the board originally voted.

The Trumbull County Board of Elections unanimously decided Friday to have elections for the village’s 1st and 3rd Wards in 2020, not in 2021. Until the election is held, Zachary Svette has been appointed by council to the 1st Ward seat and former Mayor Lyle A. Waddell has been appointed to fill the 3rd Ward seat.

Based on the new board of elections decision, candidates interested in running for the seats now have only about a month to file petitions with the board before the Dec. 18 filing deadline. And whoever wins the March 17 primary and then the November general election will only be safe in the seats for a short time because they will have to run again in 2021.

We strongly urge residents to take the opportunity seriously and if they are committed to serving their community and the constituency, now is the time to start collecting petition signatures in order to appear on the March primary election ballot. We hope there are challengers so that voters will have a choice.

In fact, we hope those considering runs for all political offices are doing the same in every community.

Voters in every community deserve a choice.

And they deserve to hear what political candidates hope to do for their constituents, rather than negativity about their opponents. We will be asking hard questions of the candidates in these and all upcoming races, and we encourage readers and constituents to do the same.

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