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Trumbull voters make changes in city posts



Published: Wed, May 9, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



A Warren councilman ousted Tuesday is focusing on national politics.

By AMANDA C. DAVIS

and DENISE DICK

VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF

WARREN -- Girard has a new council president, Hubbard will see a new face heading up the 3rd Ward, and two Warren council members were ousted in Tuesday's primary election.

In Girard, Leo S. Grimes lost his council presidency to challenger Louis J. Adovasio. Adovasio garnered 55 percent of the vote to Grimes' 45 percent.

"Lou worked hard, and he won -- democracy in progress. What's to say?" Grimes said.

Adovasio served six years as a councilman-at large until 1999, when he lost a bid for mayor.

"I'm very happy," he said. "I'm ecstatic. I ran a hard campaign, I did a lot of knocking on doors, and I had a lot of family and friends working hard for me."

A lot of people he spoke with remembered him from his years on council, he said, and they were upset with Girard's financial situation. He has listed accountability as his priority. Mayor James Melfi has asked the state to audit the city's books after finding that one fund didn't have money in it and that the $3.5 million general fund is about $800,000 in the red.

In Hubbard, challenger Lisha Pompili-Baumiller defeated incumbent Robert R. DeJulio in the 3rd Ward council race. DeJulio has been on council since 1988.

Warren council: In Warren, at-large Councilwoman Sherry Cox-Calloway lost her bid for re-election, and newcomers Genevieve Lucas and Andy Barkley also failed to capture enough votes.

The race's top vote-getters were political newcomer Gary Fonce and incumbents Daniel Polivka and Robert Marchese.

They face Republican Niki Frenchko-Nagy in the November general election. Fonce, 39, resigned from the city's police force last year, after being laid off and called back to work a few months later. He now works for Pinkerton Consulting and Investigations.

Cox-Calloway, elected in 2000, said she's thankful for the support she received and won't rule out politics in the future.

In contested ward races, Councilman Ron White, D-4th, lost his bid for re-election after serving council a little more than three years.

His seat is being filled by Robert Holmes III, retired from the city's water department. His father, Robert Holmes Jr., spent many years on council in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s.

He said he'll answer to the people and will help ensure revenues from the income tax increase, passed Tuesday, will be spent on safety services, as promised.

Higher aim: White said he's disappointed and believes he was a leader on council. He attributed the loss to low voter turnout.

He says he's interested in U.S. Rep. James Traficant's 17th Congressional District seat.

Traficant, of Poland, faces a 10-count federal indictment. He's said he has no plans to resign and would have to be convicted before he'd be removed from office. He'll be up for re-election in 2002.

White lost his bid to become a Trumbull County commissioner last year.

Downtown business owner Tristan Hand also vied for the seat. He said voters have not seen the last of him.

In other contested races, council members Virginia Bufano, D-1st, and Alford Novak, D-2nd, won re-election.

davis@vindy.com




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