Hanselman, Zielinski will contend for Center Line mayor

Council race features two challengers, two incumbents

By: Brian Louwers | Online Only | Published May 15, 2013

CENTER LINE — Voters in Center Line will get to take part in a mayoral rematch this November.

The filing deadline for candidates wishing to run for election this year came and went May 14, and it set up another contest between incumbent Mayor David Hanselman and former Mayor Mary Ann Zielinski.

Hanselman, 70, served 28 straight years on the Center Line City Council before he defeated Zielinski by a nearly 2-1 margin in November 2009.

He said he was “surprised” to learn Zielinski filed to run against him.

“I heard a rumor. That’s all I heard. I was surprised,” Hanselman said. “That’s the American way.”

Hanselman said he worked hard with the City Council, City Manager John Michrina and the city treasurer to balance the city’s books after the election in 2009 and that the city is again starting to build a “rainy day” fund balance.

“When I took over, the city was in bad financial shape.  The voters, I think they’re pleased with the way the city has been run the last four years,” Hanselman said. “I think the citizens, I know they’re happy. They tell me they’re happy. I’m pleased with that.”

Hanselman also said he’s reinstated the city’s Beautification Commission, and revitalized the city’s Downtown Development Authority with positive results.

Zielinski, 73, served on the Center Line City Council for four years prior to her election as mayor in 1981. She lost to Lou Nardi in 1993 but won the mayoral election again in 1997 and continued to serve until she was defeated in 2009.

“I was going to be content to sit back. I’ve done my stretch,” Zielinski said May 15. “I’m not happy with the decline in our city services, nor watching the decline of our city overall. Apparently, a great number of other residents and taxpayers of this community feel the same way, because many of them have been urging me to go back and do it again. So that’s where I am.”

Zielinski said she’d depend on supporters who have urged her to run to help fuel her campaign.

“I’m depending on these people. You wanted me to run. I’m going to do it for you, and for your family and for my family,” Zielinski said.

Also now destined for the November ballot are four candidates — including two incumbents — who filed to run for two seats on the Center Line City Council up for re-election this year.

Challengers William Sherman and Euphemia Franklin filed to run against incumbents Nicholas Chakur and Mary Hafner.

Because the field already includes just two mayoral candidates and four council candidates, the city does not need to hold a primary election in August. Center Line city government races will appear on the ballot for the Nov. 5 general election.

It should also be noted that all candidates have until 4 p.m. May 17 to withdraw their candidacy.