October 30, 2014

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Vermilion Mayor Eileen Bulan easily wins re-election

Vermilion Mayor Eileen Bulan, left, looks over election results with her daughter-in-law Heather Bulan, right, and Tom Orbhan, of Vermilion, at Quaker Steak and Lube in Vermilion. STEVE MANHEIM/CHRONICLE

Vermilion Mayor Eileen Bulan, left, looks over election results with her daughter-in-law Heather Bulan, right, and Tom Orbhan, of Vermilion, at Quaker Steak and Lube in Vermilion. STEVE MANHEIM/CHRONICLE

VERMILION — Incumbent Eileen Bulan was easily re-elected to lead the city for the next four years — defeating the same opponent she ousted in 2009 to claim the mayor’s job.

Bulan defeated ex-mayor Jean Anderson in votes tallied from both Lorain and Erie counties. In Lorain County, Bulan took 934 votes to Anderson’s 476, according to unofficial results. In Erie County, Bulan took 960 votes to Anderson’s 289, according to unofficial returns.

“We are very excited about the win,” Bulan said, adding that a lot of her success in Tuesday’s election is largely due to the administration’s work with City Council.

“We have a good collaboration of City Council and the administration. We work well together,” she said.

Bulan said she hopes to continue what she sees as a successful first term.

“We’re going to move forward with the streets … apply for another neighborhood revitalization grant … and just keep moving forward,” Bulan said.

Bulan received a revitalization grant to improve the roads and streets around Vermilion. Part of the grant went to the construction and opening of the downtown Friendship Park, which is expected to be finished by spring.

Bulan’s administration also received a $298,000 grant to revitalize Vermilion-on-the-Lake, which the government is utilizing.

Anderson could not be reached Tuesday night.

The two women both have a long history in Vermilion government and with each other.

Anderson was elected mayor in 2005, defeating incumbent Jim Davis whom Bulan was working for at the time. Anderson took office in 2006 and worked as mayor until 2009, when Bulan ran for mayor for the first time.

Bulan defeated Anderson in that race. In 2010, Anderson filed a lawsuit against Bulan’s administration for failing to release public documents. The lawsuit was resolved in November 2012 when the Ohio Supreme Court ruled that some of the records were not protected by attorney-client privilege and should be released.

Bulan said she is hopeful about the future of Vermilion.

“I think people have a lot of faith in us,” she said.

Contact Anna Merriman at 329-7245 or amerriman@chroniclet.com. Follow her on Twitter at @AnnaLMerriman.