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Portage County's New State Rep. Will Focus on Small Businesses, Mental Health

State Rep. Gail Pavliga sworn into office Jan. 4
House Majority Comms
Ohio House of Representatives
State Rep. Gail Pavliga is sworn in to office Jan. 4 to represent Ohio's 75th House District, which covers most of central and southern Portage County.

One of the eight new women in the Ohio House is from Portage County.

State Rep. Gail Pavliga represents the 75th Ohio House District, which includes most of central and southern Portage County. A Republican, Pavliga beat Democratic incumbentRandi Clites for the seat in November.

Pavliga says her background as a small business owner of a Christian counseling center and a college professor at Malone University helps inform her on the issues her constituents are facing.

State Rep. Gail Pavliga on priorities

“I’m really hoping to keep businesses open and to do it safely as these mandates have so drastically hurt them and their workers and have resulted in so many of these problems that go into mental health, which is also a big push for me,” Pavliga said.

Aside from small businesses and mental health, she also plans to focus on increasing funding for higher education and vocational schools.

Republicans won big in Portage County this past election, which Pavliga attributes to the county wanting conservative, common-sense leadership.

Abigail Bottar covers Akron, Canton, Kent and the surrounding areas for Ideastream Public Media.