5th District race features 3-term incumbent, novice
LISBON — The race for state representative for Ohio’s 5th District features three-term incumbent Tim Ginter and Daniel Winston of Wellsville, who is making his first run for the office.
A graduate of the Nazarene Bible College in Colorado and Mount Vernon Nazarene University in Ohio, Ginter worked as a machinist before becoming a minister. He continues to serve as pastor at the Church At The Center in Salem while serving in the legislature.
Ginter and his wife Pam live in Salem. They have a daughter and three grandchildren.
Winston has an associate degree in Christian ministry and worked at Walmart in 2006 on the remodel team, as assistant manager at PJ Party Rental 2006-13, a mortgage title specialist for Title Source 2011-13, youth pastor at the River Christian Fellowship 2013-17, claims processing specialist for Aetna Health Insurance 2014-2020, and claims processing specialist for Cigna Group Insurance 2020-to-present.
Winston ran for Wellsville Village Council as a write-in candidate in 2019. He is the father of a 4-year-old son and an 18-month son who died in 2014.
Ginter is seeking re-election after serving nearly six years because “my sense of calling to serve the constituents of District 5 is still as strong as ever.” Ginter said he is proud of providing individual constituent service and believes he has evolved into an effective legislator.
He was named Legislator of the Year in 2020 by the Area Agencies on Aging for his work on issues impacting the elderly and was also recognized for helping provide additional funding for child victims of human trafficking.
Winston is running “because I believe that our district deserves a candidate that shows up in the community. The southern part of the district is historically ignored. This is something I would like to remedy.”
REACTION TO DEWINE
The candidates were asked to evaluate Gov. Mike DeWine’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Six months ago, when the reality of the COVID-19 pandemic hit the U.S. and Ohio, none of us knew what we were dealing with and I believe the governor did the best he could with the information he was receiving,” Ginter said
He said they now know from the CDC the survival rate for people over age 70 who contract the coronavirus is nearly 95 percent (99 percent for anyone under 70), and an increasing number of experts are saying the impact of the continuing shutdown is creating more problems than the virus.
“Businesses permanently shuttered, skyrocketing domestic abuse, mental health cases, suicides, alcohol and drug abuse just to name a few. With this in mind, I believe it is time for us to continue to open Ohio back up,” he said.
Ginter voted in favor of a bill that has since been signed into law by DeWine that not only bans any public official from taking action to cancel a scheduled election except in the event of an attack but prohibits public officials from closing any places of worship. DeWine postponed the March 17 primary election 16 hours before the polls opened, but places of worship were exempted from his ban on mass gatherings.
Winston also believes DeWine has done a good job. “It is simple to judge the governor from the outside looking in. I believe he made some tough decisions in the beginning that saved lives. They may not have been popular, but they have been proven to decrease the workload on our health care system. In my opinion, the state legislature should have done better at financially and medically protecting Ohioans,” he said.
Ginter also addressed some of his most prominent votes cast during the current legislative session, including in support of increasing the state gas tax.
“It provided a much-needed increase of $2.2 million to our county, townships, and municipalities to help repair our roads and bridges, some of which were becoming a safety hazard,” he said, adding it also resulted in increased road funding for townships and also lifted the 150-mile restriction on special regional haulings permits, which helped local truckers.
Winston said he would have voted differently on a bill to established workers’ compensation and disability retirements for first responders suffering from post-traumatic stress, a bill that would require government agencies to require contractors hire a certain number of local laborers, and the transportation bill that included changes to the traffic camera laws, which resulted in an inadvertent cut in state local government funding to local cities, villages and townships.
The traffic camera language was interpreted two different ways by attorneys, and the difference of opinion was not mentioned in the bill analysis provided legislators. Ginter said he would never have voted for the bill had he known it would result in less local government funding, for every other community but those with traffic cameras, and he helped introduce legislation to correct the problem and it has since passed. As a result, no community will lose funding.
Ginter said he voted against the bill providing workers compensation/disability benefits for first responders suffering from post-traumatic stress, not because he disagreed with the laudable goal, but because it was such a dramatic departure from current policy and in such a way “that will have unintended consequences.” He noted this bill was not only opposed by businesses but by organizations representing Ohio’s cities, villages, townships and county commissioners.
Ginter said he voted in favor of a bill eliminating geographical residence requirements for public contracts because it increased project costs, which were passed on to taxpayers. “In no other industry, when public funds are involved, does the state or city prescribe where individual employees must reside” when working on a local public project, he said.
If elected, Winston said his legislative priorities would be job creation, increased rehabilitative services for drug addicts, and better funding for school districts.
POLITICAL PARTY: Republican
OCCUPATION: Pastor at the Church At The Center in Salem
PREVIOUS ELECTED EXPERIENCE: Nearly six years as state representative
GOALS: Continue providing individual constituent service and being an effective legislator.
NOTABLE QUOTE: “I believe it is time for us to continue to open Ohio back up,”
POLITICAL PARTY: Democrat
OCCUPATION: Claims processing specialist for Cigna Group Insurance
PREVIOUS ELECTED EXPERIENCE: None
GOALS: Job creation, increased rehabilitative services for drug addicts, and better funding for school districts.
NOTABLE QUOTE: “The southern part of the district is historically ignored. This is something I would like to remedy.”