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Gunnoe, Homrighausen file petitions for Dover mayor Republican primary

| February 2, 2023
Nick Homrighausen sits behind his father Richard Homrighausen, Dover's longest serving mayor, at a court hearing in September during the latter's trial for theft in office and other criminal counts.

Shane Gunnoe at his last meeting as Dover’s interim mayor in January.

DOVER (WJER) (February 2, 2023) – Wednesday was the filing deadline for Republicans and Democrats who want to appear on the local ballot in the May 2 primary.

Three candidates have filed for the Dover Mayor race, and the contest for the Republican nomination will be interesting. The Board of Elections still has to certify the petitions, which it plans to do at a February 13th meeting.

Recent Interim Mayor Shane Gunnoe and Nick Homrighausen, the son of recently disqualified Mayor Rick Homrighausen, have filed petitions to be on the May ballot as Republicans.

Gunnoe, when he was Council President, called for Richard Homrighausen’s resignation, oversaw an investigation into his administration, and was a witness for the prosecution in the elder Homrighausen’s criminal trial where he was found guilty of theft in office.

Nick Homrighausen

Nick Homrighausen did not return phone messages left at the number he provided to the Board of Elections and a work number.

He is listed as the executive director of the Harrison County Community Improvement Corporation.

Harrison County Commissioner Paul Coffland, who last year accused Nick Homrighausen of breaching the county’s trust and called for his firing, on Wednesday said Harrison County commissioners have cut all ties with the CIC and he did not know Nick Homrighausen’s status with the agency.

Nick Homrighausen has had some contentious interactions with Dover city officials over the past two years.

At a Council meeting a year ago, he dared Dover Law Director Doug O’Meara to “Take me to court” when O’Meara questioned him about allegedly asking city employees to raise money for his father’s mayoral campaigns.

In August 2021, Nick Homrighausen yelled at now Council President Justin Perkowski, using obscenities, and slammed his hand against the door to Council Chambers as the two had a disagreement following a meeting. After that, Council members requested a police presence at their meetings.

Gunnoe wants to return to mayor’s office

Gunnoe says he has also applied for appointment to the mayor’s seat that is now vacant following Rick Homrighausen’s disqualification. The County Republican Central Committee will appoint someone to the seat at a meeting Feb. 7.

Gunnoe says he wants to continue what he started when he was interim mayor for nine months.

“I have pretty clearly outlined and put forward my position as it relates to opposing waste, theft, or abuse of taxpayer funds in city government. And Nick is welcome to state his position as well, but I think it’s obviously a pretty clear contrast given Mayor Homrighausen’s conviction for theft in office and other charges,” Gunnoe said.

Colby Byrom would be unopposed in Democratic Primary

Colby Byrom has filed to run for the Democratic nod for Dover’s mayor. The 73-year-old retired from the Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District where he was deputy treasurer.

“I just talked to a lot of people and they were somewhat discouraged about the situation in Dover and what’s going on. I talked to people in Columbus, Florida, California, and France, and a lot of them encouraged me to run. I realize they can’t vote for me, but I told them, ‘What the heck? I’ll give her a shot,’” Byrom said.

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