Three city council seats up in spring election

BUCKHANNON — Three city council seats will be up for grabs in May 2018, and anyone who wants to run for office may begin filing next month.

At last Thursday’s Buckhannon City Council meeting, finance and administrative director Amberle Jenkins announced that two four-year council seats — as well as the four-year city recorder position — will become available.

“There’s two council positions up for vote, and that would be Mary Albaugh’s position and Dave Thomas’ position, and then of course, our recorder because Susan (Aloi) is filling an unexpired term,” Jenkins said.

Aloi, who was
appointed city recorder
Oct. 1, 2016 following the resignation of recorder Rick Edwards Aug. 31, 2016, said Tuesday she would not be running to retain the city recorder position.

“Because of Michael’s job, I cannot be involved in political campaigns,” Aloi said. “An appointment is different.”

Aloi’s husband, Michael Aloi, is a U.S. magistrate judge for the U.S. District Court, Northern District of West Virginia.

Candidates may begin filing for office with the city recorder at city hall, 70 E. Main St., on Monday, Jan. 8, 2018. The last day to file in person is Friday, Jan. 26, 2018 at 4:30 p.m., and filings sent by mail must be postmarked by midnight Saturday, Jan. 27, according to the election call.

Albaugh — who was first elected to council in 2014 — said Tuesday she is definitely planning to run in 2018.

“I think we’re finally getting some consistency,” she said. “We have a good group. I remember when things were a lot shakier, and it was hard for me and I think it was hard for everybody else. What we’ve got now is that family network friendship, and I enjoy seeing that. It’s as good as it was way back when and, in fact, a heck of a lot better.

“I love to work with the city and the community,” Albaugh added. “We have open discussions about things — very open. I like what we’ve accomplished. Look at Jawbone (Park), and not just Jawbone, but the fact that the whole water plant was revamped in-house, the majority of it. I think people are happier. People are always going to complain, but that’s just because sometimes, they don’t always have the facts. Really, all they have to do is ask.”

Thomas is still undecided about whether he’s going to run.

“I’m leaning towards running, but I still have some things I want to consider,” he said Tuesday. “I want to talk to some people and get their opinions about whether they think I could be effective as a council person still. I’m not a definite, but I’m leaning towards it.”

Having served on council since 2004, Thomas has been elected for three four-year terms and one two-year term.

“I’m finishing out my 14th year on council,” he said.

The filing fee is $7.50 for recorder and $5 for council; the recorder additionally needs to be bonded.

At Thursday’s meeting, Aloi encouraged any interested candidates to run for recorder and/or council. Call city hall at 304-472-1651 for more information about running for municipal office.

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