Home News Circleville City Council Splits Votes with New Council Member

Circleville City Council Splits Votes with New Council Member


Circleville – A new council member was voted on tonight by the council the decision came down to a member of the council who doesn’t normally vote.

A position for Circleville City Council was posted this month after former Circleville Mayor Don Mcllroy who was elected to the 2nd ward seat sent in a letter of resignation. Three candidates that live in the ward came forward to fill the seat. Caryn Koch-Esterline who filled the seat previously but, did not run in the last election, John Moats, and Ginger Wright.

During a special meeting on Tuesday, Circleville City Council was a full house, where the candidates will be interviewed in a special session and then voted on by the full council. The candidates were allowed five minutes to tell the Council why they should be selected. Caryn Koch-Esterline who held the seat last year spoke first.

“As a former council member for the Second Ward spanning from January 2022 to December 2023 and service on the board of zoning appeals in 2018 and 2014. I am well prepared to undertake the responsibilities for this term. My credentials are further bolstered by a master’s degree from New York University and extensive corporate experience in Chicago and New York. My ongoing involvement in government subject boards and committees is a testament to my dedication to community excellence which is underscored by robust engagement, leadership, and achievements. My husband and I are entrepreneurs and operate our own online retail business, which has garnered years of working in corporate America and in the boardroom. I am a seventh-generation resident of Pickaway County and a fourth-generation small business owner here in Circleville. This experience is pertinent to being a valuable representative for the second world as a council member. I am experienced and qualified as a candidate with an understanding of statutory governance and its processes. The people in the Second Ward believed in me. I hope that you can too. I humbly and respectfully. I’m asking for your vote this evening.”

Ginger Wright spoke second and cast her support not towards herself but towards Koch-Esterline, “I will start with the first part of it. In the last interview, I discussed why I feel that I’m the best candidate for the seat. This time I want wanted to delve in a bit deeper into why others have not earned this seat. I respected Karen’s Professionalism when she held the seat when we were all discussing here. First, she was voted in by the citizens of this ward. And to me, that should be the priority. While she and I have not always seen eye to eye, and I have seen her disagree with people on this council, I saw her stand up for her citizens of this city who didn’t want the library vote when everyone else was concerned about being politically correct and worried about who might be getting sued. She did it regardless of what people thought because she believed in her convictions, and wanted to do right, even if others disagreed. For that, I have to respect her. And her ability to stand for what she believes in is a quality that I feel we all need. I truly feel she didn’t run for this seat for the same reasons, as many other said, peer pressure, lack of support from her party fear.”

John Moats spoke last, “I want to serve the community I want to help and serve the community in any way I can. I’ve been blessed by the community support I can’t be in business without community support. Our business wouldn’t stay open if we didn’t have a relationship with our community and in our city. Fortunately, we have my family has had car lots my great uncle’s a motorcycle car lots. We had builders, that my one grandfather in a gas station and delivered ice on a on a wagon with by Horse. So my father had his own real estate company and retired from DuPont. So we’re invested in this community, my family always has been, I feel that I am. Those are the kinds of things that I can help and bring to the city. Because my experience or my experiences has been more than 20 years of business. My experience has been dealing with clients every day. I’ve dealt, with conflicts. I’ve had to listen and communicate. I’ve had pto problem solve I’ve had to hold people accountable. And to come to a common ground with my client. In this case, it would be with the community or with you all at the same time. There’s going to be some give and take professionally, I’ve served on boards with the Chamber, the rotary believe about scholarship, employee wise, I’ve had to deal with hiring firing, and benefits. insurance background, I obviously know a little bit about benefits and liability concerns that we could face. And financially owning my own business. And keeping that footprint open and having employees, I have to run my business in the black have to be financially responsible, and I have to do the right thing every day in order to allocate funds to be profitable. I think I can learn quickly. I think I can get on pretty quickly. I think with your support, and your experience, I know that I can. But in closing, I just want to say that I’m proud of Circleville I’m proud to be from Circleville I would like to help and serve with you and for Ward 2. The city has done nothing but given our family over several years. And I just would love the opportunity to get back.”

After the initial statements each candidate was asked one question that the council felt was important for Circleville’s future, The Saftey Levy, New Homes and Development coming to Circleville, and Parks.

Caryn Koch-Esterline answered the Saftey Levy question, “Really the safety levy is summed up by dollar signs. I sat up here with most of you. And we talked about trying to get this levy possibly a little lower than even the point .4% But we need at least the point 4% We started out at .5% which is the obvious tax we have on it right now. And I thought we came to a great agreement and could lower to .4% So does lower taxes. I think we were we did a fantastic job figuring this out and bringing that to our people. We do need these monies to pay for fire. I believe this would pay for three firemen we support the police department we still have positions I believe to fill in that area and a lot of that is dependent upon these monies. So it is pertinent that the levy passes and I am glad the work we did to lower up to the point 4% Because I definitely believe in lowering taxes as much as we possibly can.”

Ginger Wright spoke on planned housing and commercial development projects in the future, “I used to live in the City in Florida, it was about the same size as Circleville when there and within a 10 year period of time, that city had tripled or more in population development came. They were not prepared for the infrastructure. And that’s now where they stand still to this day, and I’ve been gone for 15 years, and they’re still fighting infrastructure. It now would take you an hour and a half now to move from that end of town to this end of town. In that setting, and and it’s it’s just continuing to grow all in the name of progress. During that growth. I realized about nine years into it, that I hadn’t seen a bunny rabbit in 10 years that I had not seen any animals other than alligators. We need growth. But it needs to be the slower and slower pace with infrastructure considered because if we take the moves that we’re making right now, at the building rights that we are satisfying only the builders as a matter of fact. It’s a privilege to move here. The developers are privileged to be able to come here and develop their subdivisions. We should be charging them not helping them. They should pay taxes to they should pay impact fees for what they do here. And if we had that money, we might not need the Saftey Levy.”

John Moats spoke last on Parks and Recreation in the City mostly aimed at plans for improvements at Barthamus Park, a nearby park and Ted Lewis Park.

“Well, I come from a recreational family. So we’ve chased our kids all over the place, playing sports, and I know that having someplace to go and play is critical. I remember growing up with my youngest now 22 years old, we’ve been taking bike rides to Ted Lewis Park before it was improved. And you know, there’ll be there’ll be fear sometimes of what we would run into at the creek and some of those things. But back to my point is we traveled to the parks, we spent a lot of time in parks growing up and I grew up Ted Lewis, who was at a pool and was given $5 and asked to stay out of the house for a few hours. But that’s how they build memories. They build things in a community to give people outlets to go do things. So my opinion the development of Parks and Recreation in cities is critical to the infrastructure and I think it draws people into us as well. So they want those kind of things in our community. And I think if we keep implementing and improving those areas, that’ll be beneficial to our city.”

After all three candidates spoke a vote was taken by the Council, Katie Logan Hedges, voted for Moates, Theis for, Esterline, Tom Klitzka for Esterline, Jeff Hallinin for Moates Zach Brooks for Moats, and Tom Duvall for Esterline. Ending in a tie 3 to 3. Council President Barry Keller broke the tie and voted for John Moats cementing him into 2nd ward representative.

John Moats is married and has three kids, two adults and one at home, he works at Anderson Insurance where he has worked for 19 years, for 20 years he has been in real estate, he has a Bachelor of Science in Business and Technology from Ohio University. His family has deep roots in Pickaway County, in his speech he reported that his grandfather delivered Ice by Horse locally.