Lepore-Hagan faces a political newcomer in her re-election bid to the Ohio House


Challenger wants to give $2.7B rainy-day fund to property owners

By David Skolnick

skolnick@vindy.com

YOUNGSTOWN

State Rep. Michele Lepore-Hagan, D-58th, is seeking her third two-year term in the Ohio House.

Republican David Simon, seeking elected office for the first time, is challenging her in the Nov. 6 general election.

Lepore-Hagan, 63, of Youngstown, said she wants to continue to fight for better public education – such as replacing the Youngstown Plan with the community learning center concept that is being used in Cincinnati and Akron and features comprehensive wraparound services for students and families.

She also wants to grow the local economy.

“The formula for attracting and retaining business and creating good-paying jobs is time-tested: Create an appealing environment that features good schools, a vibrant arts and culture community, safe neighborhoods, well-educated and highly motivated workforce, sufficient traditional and high-tech infrastructure, access to major transportation arteries, ample supply of affordable, usable land [and] supportive government officials and community leaders,” Lepore-Hagan said.

Simon, 56, of Youngstown, said while he’s a Republican, he doesn’t advertise it because the district is heavily Democratic and “I don’t want to scare away people. I am totally against partisan politics.”

Among his positions is the elimination of the state’s $2.7 billion rainy-day fund. He wants to distribute the money to property owners who, he said, have paid into it without reaping the benefits.

Simon also wants to reform education by getting rid of statewide testing and “let the teachers teach.”

He also wants to focus on economic growth and create an “environment for businesses to thrive.”

Lepore-Hagan said she’s running for re-election “in order to build upon the work I have done during my two successful terms in office and to continue fighting to improve the lives of working families, women, veterans, seniors, children and all of Ohio.”

The 58th District includes all of Youngstown, Struthers, Campbell, Lowellville, Coitsville and most of Austintown.

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