Economic Developer Wants To Be Lowville's MayorPosted: Updated:
Lowville native Eric Virkler hopes to be the next mayor of the village.
"My motto is making the community a better place. I'm a believer in community service and doing what I can to help Lowville be a great place to live," he said.
Virkler says he knows how the village operates. He worked as the village clerk/treasurer/administrator from 2005 to 2009 and served on the board of trustees for 2 years before that.
Currently, Virkler serves as the executive director of the Lewis County Industrial Development Agency. He says his experience, as well as his dedication and interest in making Lowville a great place to live make him the best candidate for the job.
"Some of the things I can bring to the table are seeking grant funds to assist the village, working with a staff and understanding what their jobs are. All things I've been familiar with in the past," he said.
Also running for the position is Joseph Beagle, the current deputy mayor. Two-term Mayor Donna Smith decided not to seek reelection.
Virkler acknowledges there could be conflicts between his job at the Lewis County IDA and village mayor because the IDA often helps local governments.
"The overall goal is the same I think for economic development and for the village of Lowville in a lot of ways, there's a lot of things that really go well together so as long as we're careful about other things that might not be a cooperative approach, then I think it will be fine," he said.
Virkler is also circulating petitions for Lewis County treasurer, although he hasn't made up his mind yet if he'll actually run. But it appears he could be both mayor and county treasurer at the same time.
Lewis County Board of Elections Republican Commissioner Ann Nortz said, "To our knowledge, county law only restricts holding specific offices, and village offices are not among them."
Residents can cast their vote for mayor at the village offices on March 19.