Incumbents seek re-election; others join trustee race

Natalie Pillsbury

Both Brimfield and Franklin Townships will elect two trustees Tuesday. Five candidates are running in each area.

Township trustees serve as the executive branch of government for the township. Three sit on the board and have the authority to adopt regulations for the area, appropriate funds and hold the title and responsibility for the physical property of the township. They also may resolve zoning disputes and hire personnel.

Franklin Township includes the city of Kent and surrounding areas. Directly south is Brimfield Township.

Franklin Township Trustee Race

Clarence Cobb, a candidate for Franklin Township Board of Trustees, hopes to bring business to the area.

“I retired from the township, and I’m interested in getting back into it,” Cobb said.

Cobb is also interested in correcting flooding problems throughout the township and making street and road repairs.

He said that he has spoken to community members and they all have their own “pet peeves.”

Because there is such a mixture of issues and concerns throughout Franklin Township, Cobb said there is no main problem or goal to be addressed. He is mainly concerned with doing the most he can for the community and pleasing the most people possible.

There are five candidates running for Franklin Township Board of Trustees. There are three democratic candidates: Mark Beckwith, Karen Claxton and Delores Durbin. There are two republican candidates: Keith Benjamin and Clarence Cobb.

Beckwith and Keith Benjamin are both incumbents.

Brimfield Township Trustee Race

The main goal of Brimfield Township trustee Dan Tronge, who is running for reelection, is to repair roads and upgrade the park system.

“We already have two parks,” Tronge said. “But we want more, and we want to upgrade the ones we have. We recently hired a part-time park director.”

He and Mike Kostensky, another current trustee, have been campaigning together.

Tronge said that they have the same goals for Brimfield Township and are very close.

Brimfield is part of a Joint Economic Development District program with Tallmadge and Kent. Tronge said that this program will allot extra money for improvements because on Jan. 1 the sales tax goes up a quarter percent.

The money from the tax revenues are split between cities that are part of a Joint Economic Development District.

The money is used to accelerate development of industrial, business and commercial areas that create additional jobs, payroll taxes and corporate net profit taxes, according to

There are five candidates for Brimfield Township Board of Trustees. Three Democrats are running: Scot C. Etling, Kostensky and Tronge. There are two Republican candidates: Ronn Franczkowski and Clifford Porter.

Contact public affairs reporter Natalie Pillsbury at [email protected].