Former school board member gets city’s top job

Sunday Times Newspapers

SOUTHGATE — Joseph Kuspa will return to elected office in his hometown for a two-year term as mayor after defeating former Mayor Dennis David 3,450 votes to 1,182 in Tuesday’s election.

    “I’m very pleased with the outcome,” said Kuspa, a former member of the Southgate Commmunity Schools Board of Education. “Across the board, each precinct in the city favored my candidacy.

    “The very fact of the honor of serving as mayor in the town I’ve been part of for 51 years is overwhelming and emotional. I just look forward to serving.”

    Kuspa said his biggest priority is getting a handle on city finances as they relate to state revenues.

    “We may have to readjust our budget to accommodate changes that may be coming,” he said.

    Some 4,704 voters turned out for Tuesday’s election, which also saw City Council incumbents Carol Batko (2,606 votes), Janice Ferencz (2,385), Patricia Ganzberger (2,451), Philip Rauch (2,783) and Christopher Rollet (2,557) returned to office.

    Joining them on the council are former members Karen George (2,315 votes) and Dale Zamecki (2,313). Unsuccessful council candidates included Neil Cameron, who received 1,399 votes, Michelle Davis (2,098) and Thomas Holme (2,282).

    City Clerk Thomas Alexander (3,583) and Treasurer Sheryl Denman (3,520), both incumbents, ran unchallenged and retained their posts.

    A city charter amendment changing council meetings from every other Wednesday to the first and third Wednesdays of each month passed 3,615 to 561.

    William Kirk Hayhurst, with 1,929 votes and Darlene Pomponio (2,052) were elected to the school board, with Paul Knott (1,886) finishing third.

    A nonhomestead millage renewal passed 2,367 votes to 2,069, allowing the school district to levy 18 mills on all property except residences, increasing it by 0.2 mills, or 20 cents for each $1,000 of taxable value, for seven years.