While there will be a new member of the Elizabethtown Council after Nov. 6, the names voters have to choose from are familiar ones.
Former councilman Michael McGinn, who left the board last year and is seeking re-election in 2012, will square off against Evelyn Hatch, who ran for McGinn’s seat last year and is seeking the post for the second consecutive election.
The two are vying to fill the unexpired term of former councilman Ken Fenimore, who resigned from the board Sept. 18. The term runs through Dec. 31, 2013.
Supervisor Margaret Bartley said the winner of the special election would be sworn in at the Nov. 20 regular board meeting, if they so choose, instead of waiting until the New Year.
Both McGinn and Hatch currently work in Essex County government. McGinn works in the highway department and is the head of the local employees union. Hatch is employed by the Public Defender’s office and was the former owner of Evelyn’s Bakery & Delicatessen and Court St. Collectibles.
The Valley News asked both candidates a series of five questions. The following is their responses to each:
Why are you running for the position of town council?
McGinn: Wants to help keep taxes as low as possible so our kids will stay here.
Hatch: I am running because, more than ever, we need people on the town board who are willing to work with and listen to others, whether it be on an individual basis or with other boards and organizations in Town.
What experience do you bring to the position that will be beneficial to the community? Hatch: My service on the E’town Planning Board and the Elizabethtown-Lewis Chamber of Commerce for the past five years and my experience as a business woman in E’town qualifies me for this position.
McGinn: Served for six years as a town councilman, from 2006 until 2011.
What is the most pressing need for the town of Elizabethtown, and how do you feel you can help meet that need? McGinn: Keep the town the same and add a water treatment plant that will benefit everyone.
Hatch: The most pressing need for our town is a sewer system. A sewer in the core business district will jump start E’town’s economy. Any new development... will need to have a sewer system in place.
There seems to have been a lot of divisiveness in town politics over the past year. If elected, how will you work to bring those with differing opinions together on key town issues? Hatch: We need to change this climate of negativity and, if elected, I will try to promote positive and constructive dialogue with people of all views and to keep an open mind on all of the issues that come before the Board.
McGinn: I will work in the best interests of the town.
After four years, what do you want voters to remember about your service to the community? McGinn: That I did the best for the town.
Hatch: I would like people to remember that I was always fiscally conservative and voted accordingly, keeping the interests of the taxpayers and the town in mind at all times. And I would like to be remembered as being open to all opinions and capable of changing my mind whenever I can be convinced it is best for E'town.