Oregon councilman Sheehy tapped to complete Rep. Szollosi's term

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    Michael P. Sheehy

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  • Michael P. Sheehy
    Michael P. Sheehy

    COLUMBUS — Oregon City Councilman Mike Sheehy has been pegged by House Democrats to complete the 18 months remaining in the term vacated by former Rep. Matt Szollosi.

    State Rep. Matthew A. Szollosi (D-49th District).
    State Rep. Matthew A. Szollosi (D-49th District).

    The move will keep control of the 46th District in the city of Oregon, despite the district’s westward geographic shift in the latest redistricting.

    Mr. Sheehy, a former CSX Railroad freight conductor and a University of Toledo graduate, is in his ninth term on council. The House Democratic Caucus is expected to ratify the recommendation of the screening committee on Wednesday, and he will then be sworn into office.

    He will have little time to settle in, however, as lawmakers work to wrap up the state budget and other business before recessing for the summer by week’s end.

    Four others were interviewed in person for the seats — Oregon City Councilman Jim Seaman; Maumee City Councilman Jenny Barlos; and retired East Toledo firefighter Bob Wuest.

    Also expressing interest were James Snodgrass Jr., a global program buyer for Ford Motor Co. and former Lucas County Planning Commissioner, and Oregon City Counciman Tom Susor. They were interviewed by phone.

    The revamped 46th stretches from Jerusalem Township and Oregon in eastern Lucas County through parts of East and South Toledo to pick up Maumee, Holland, and Springfield Township to the west.

    “I know Mike will be a tireless champion of policies to benefit middle-class Ohioans…,” said Rep. Michael Ashford (D., Toledo), who sat on the committee that screened the applicants. “It was a difficult selection process with highly qualified applicants.”

    House Minority Leader Tracy Heard (D., Columbus), said Mr. Sheehy will be a “passionate advocate for working women and men across northwest Ohio.”

    “There is a reason he has been such a successful public servant,” she said. “He is a talented and accomplished individual.”

    Mr. Szollosi stepped down as of May 31 and moved from the Toledo area to Columbus to become executive director of the Affiliated Construction Trades of Ohio, a new advocacy group for skilled trades.

    Democrats are outnumbered 60-39 by Republicans in the House.

    Contact Jim Provance at: jprovance@theblade.com or 614-221-0496.