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Curry will remain Middletown mayor; Miller, Reddinger, Kapenstein, Knull win for council

Posted 11/7/17

Mayor James H. Curry III leads with 3 of 6 precincts reporting in Tuesday general election returns. In a rematch of the 2013 race, Curry leads Robert Givler, 413 to 208 with 2 write-in …

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Curry will remain Middletown mayor; Miller, Reddinger, Kapenstein, Knull win for council

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Mayor James H. Curry III will remain Middletown mayor, beating former Middletown police officer Robert Givler in a rematch of the 2013 race.

With 6 of 6 precincts reporting, the unofficial results have Curry at 897 and Givler at 499, with 3 write-ins.

Curry, an attorney originally from the Allentown area, moved to Middletown in 2010. Running as a Democrat, Curry in 2013 defeated Givler by a count of 901 votes to 618.

Givler is well-known in Middletown, having spent 40 years as a police officer. Since July 2012, Givler. a Republican, has been a part-time officer and police administrator for the Royalton Police Department.

“I’m relieved. The voters have spoken. It’s over. The pressure is off,” Givler told the Press & Journal late Tuesday.

Givler said it's "hard to say" why he lost.

"I guess people are just happy with what he was doing, I don’t know. People live on Facebook more than we think," he said.

He said he won't run again for mayor.

“I’m done. I tried twice, and it’s obvious the people don’t want me in there, so I will let them live with what they’ve got.

"Thanks to all those that voted for me, and congratulations to him.”

Curry did not appear on the primary ballot, because at the time he had decided to change his party affiliation from Democratic to non-affiliated. However, Curry received enough write-in votes to appear on the Democratic ballot in the general election.

Curry, besides being mayor, also serves on the Middletown Industrial and Commercial Development Authority.

Messages seeking comment from Curry were not returned.

Middletown Borough Council

Jenny Miller will be the new face on the Middletown Borough Council.,

In the race for a four-year seat, Miller was the top vote-getter Tuesday with 990 votes. Incumbent Dawn Knull, the council vice president, retained her seat with 784 votes, Incumbent Ian Reddinger also will remain on council. He garnered 738 votes. David Rhen received 509 and Rachelle Reid, 495. Six of six precincts are reporting. The five candidates were running for three four-year terms on the seven-member council.

Not running for re-election was Anne Einhorn, who was elected to council in 2013.

In the race for a two-year term on the council, Ben Kapenstein beat Rachelle Reid, 839 to 424. Six precincts of six of are reporting.

Kapenstein became president of borough council in January 2016, a position he continued to hold until March 2017 when he stepped down from being president for personal reasons.

A financial adviser, Kapenstein chaired council’s finance committee before becoming president.

Knull serves on the Middletown Industrial and Commercial Development Authority.

She also has leadership roles representing council on the Olmsted Regional Recreation Board, and as the councilor designated by Suglia to be in charge of contract negotiations with the Middletown Borough Police Department.

Miller is a member of the board of trustees of the Middletown Area Historical Society, a nonprofit organization.

She also chairs the Middletown Historical Restoration Commission, an arm of borough government whose members are appointed by the council.

Miller received the most votes in the Republican primary in May, and received enough write-in votes to also be listed on the Democratic ballot in the general election.

Reddinger was appointed to council in May 2016 to fill the seat that was vacated when Greg Wilsbach, who was elected to council in 2015, resigned to seek a position as the Middletown borough public works director.

After being appointed to council Reddinger was appointed to serve on the Middletown Industrial and Commercial Development Authority. Shortly afterward he was made chairman of the authority, a position Reddinger still holds.

Reddinger was not on the primary ballot. However, he received enough write-in votes in the primary to appear on the Democratic ballot in the general election. 

Reid previously served two terms on borough council. 

She serves on the Historical Restoration Commission, and on the Human Relations Commission, whose members are appointed by council.

Rhen is also a former borough councilor. He ran as a Republican for mayor in 2013, but was defeated by Givler in the primary.

Council’s three other incumbents — Suglia, Diana McGlone, and Robert Reid — were all elected in 2015 and are not up for re-election in 2017.

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