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The Mayor's Nest: Seeking Volunteers for Local Office

Written By Editor on 3/5/17 | 3/5/17

The Mayor's Nest

Seeking Volunteers for Local Office

Across the region, the signs of election season will be popping up all over. In this case, it will likely be literal signs. Some of the villages and most of the school districts will hold elections this spring. At the town and county levels, gears are already turning toward fall races.

While some of the races can get nasty, they’re most often unopposed. In some cases, there are no other candidates, but in many there should be more involvement. The first race I ran in the Village of Middleburgh in 2006 saw about a 9% voter turnout. (Editor’s note: I lost) Many of the other races see similar low turnout, especially if they’re not in November.

What’s the solution? Well, voting certainly helps but that is just a portions. Getting involved in local efforts is a major step up. There are multiple appointed boards needing members, including Planning, Zoning, Assessment, and more. For some, there is a chance to run for office to make the area a better place. If you’re over 18 and have a heart and drive to improve your community, it’s might be just the job for you.

It’s not hard to run for local office. In most cases, it involves getting a number of signatures or attending a caucus. Winning, on the other hand, is not as simple. A campaign can be strenuous and teach you a lot about yourself and the people of the community. I know I’ve made lifelong friends and even family through the people I’ve met over the last decade.

Of course, there are some drawbacks: late night meetings, little or no pay, and making tough decisions, but each come with the territory. It’s also a chance to leave your town, village, school, or more better than you found it.

If you’re thinking about it-- go for it!


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