Mayor Richard Alcombright discussed his plans, challenges and accomplishments at his home on Friday afternoon.
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Mayor Richard Alcombright will run for a third term.
"I think I've been blessed to be in this position as mayor of the city for the past three and a half years and I certainly want to continue," Alcombright said, during an announcement at his home on Friday. "I found out that the pace is frantic at times, most times, and the challenges are many, but at the end of the day, besides being a parent, I think being mayor has been the most rewarding thing I've ever done."
The mayor discussed his challenges and successes of the first two terms before laying out his plans for the next two years.
The biggest challenges, he said, are the fiscal ones, specifically balancing the budget. He said the city not where he wants it to be financially.
However, the mayor boasted dropping the budget deficit from $2.6 million to $306,000 and controlling the budget year-to-year, currently only .6 percent higher than the fiscal 2012 budget.
Alcombright said another challenge is infrastructure, which shows its worst during harsh weather like last week's flash flooding. Alcombright is calling for more capital projects, including complying American with Disabilities Act at public buildings, public safety and sewer maintenance.
The mayor said Conte Middle School was the most recent accomplishment, citing the school committee's work with the Massachusetts School Building Authority to receive the $29.7 million borrowing order to renovate the building. He also credited the citizens who organized the petition for a vote, which passed the project narrowly. Alcombright hopes as the project continues the opposition will warm up to the school.
"It won marginally, but it still won," the mayor said. "I guess my biggest hope now that as the project progresses that we make believers out of many people who maybe had some concerns or didn't think it was the right thing. I hope seeing is believing on that project."
Alcombright also said he's proud of how 27 businesses — ranging from Bark N' Cat, the small Holden Street pet store, to the new Walmart Supercenter — have opened up in the past three and a half years.
The mayor said he hopes to privatizate Western Gateway Heritage State Park, to continue working on renovations to the Mohawk Theater and working on the master plan, which is set to release at the end of the year or beginning of next year and a part-time planner will be hired this summer to help move the project along.
In addition, Alcombright stressed his positive relationships with other local leaders, the county's legislators and Boston. He said he speaks with Adams Town Manager Jonathan Butler on a regular basis, specifically on the Ashuwillticook Rail Trail extension and the scenic railway.
"[Those projects] are going to create significant economic impact," Alcombright said.
Alcombright won his first election in 2009 after defeating 13-term Mayor John Barrett III and then won re-election in 2011 against then City Councilor President Ronald Boucher.
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The cities of Pittsfield and North Adams will hold municipal elections for mayor, city council and school committee in 2015
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