2 Democrats vie for nomination for Salem mayor

By D.A. Wilkinson



The city’s May mayoral primary comes down to a contest between two Democrat contestants.

Scott Cranmer, a former police officer and former city safety director, will face Dennis Groves, the 2nd Ward councilman and a former city firefighter.

Republican City Councilman John C. Berlin is running unopposed for mayor in the GOP primary.

After Republican Mayor Jerry Wolford’s four years in office, Columbiana County Republican Party Chairman David Johnson became disenchanted with Wolford over the city’s management.

That’s why Salem Republicans are backing Berlin.Wolford has announced he will run for a second term as an independent.

Cranmer retired from the police department after 281/2 years, and then served as safety director for the city from 2001 to 2007.

He said that he believes that by going through the state economic agencies, the city can, “create opportunities for economic development and jobs.”

Cranmer said the city’s industrial park has empty space, and a person could be found who was interested in starting a business in Salem.

The city’s water and sewer rates are the lowest in the area that could attract residents and businesses, he added.

People talk about drugs in the city, but Cranmer said that, “There were drugs back when I was on the force, safety director, and they are here now.”

He said that when he was working, under Mayor Larry DeJane, “We all worked together.”

Cranmer said he has not completed the details of his plans for his campaign.

Groves said he is a graduate of Salem High School and now works as a designer at Home Depot.

He’s running, he said, because he believes, “I can do a better job than the current mayor and others running.”

His priorities, he said, are jobs and repairing infrastructure. He did not give any examples.

He and his family also ran a business for twenty years.

He said his qualifications are, “varied jobs and life experiences from being boss to being a worker and owning and running a successful business for 20 years.”

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