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Race for mayor heats up as Hahn, Sweazy file

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By Robin Bass

The temperature outside heating up and so is the race for Taylorsville mayor with two more candidates filing their paper work with the county clerk’s office last week.

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Former Taylorsville Mayor Walter Hahn and Kindergarten teacher Ruth Ann Sweazy will be running against Commissioner Lynda Huckleberry, who announced her plans to seek the city’s highest office last month.

Mayor Don Pay has not formally stated whether he will seek re-election. Pay was elected to the post in 2006 when he defeated Hahn 181 to 158.

Prior to the run-off against Pay, Hahn had served as Taylorsville’s mayor for two decades. Hahn said that during his time in office, the city upgraded the police department, built a new city hall and annex, began installing new sewer lines and maintenance of the sewer and water lines.

“The current mayor has promised a bowling alley and a swimming pool,” said Hahn. “I’d like to know where they are at so I could go visit them.”

Hahn said he does not make promises.

 “I’ll just do the best I can,” he said.

Hahn has been employed with the Spencer County Road Department for the past three years. Prior to serving as Taylorsville’s mayor, he was a city commissioner for nearly three terms.

With his experience, Hahn said he understands how the city operates. He also is aware that the current commission has authorized several upgrades to water and sewer lines, “but I feel like we could do more,” said Hahn. Such as creating a water/sewer board that answers to the commission.

Hahn said he was motivated to file for office after being asked by several to re-consider public office.

“I want to give people a choice (at the ballot box),” said Hahn.

Sweazy said that – for her – the timing seemed right to finally pursue her aspirations to serve the City of Taylorsville.

“I have always been interested in public office, in our local government,” said Sweazy. “I’m interested in seeing Taylorsville as a great place to work, live and be something that all our citizens can be proud of.”

Sweazy has educated elementary-aged children in the local district since 1992. In addition to her regular school duties, she is currently serving a second term with the Kentucky Teacher Retirement System Board of Trustees; an elected member of the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards; and an active member in Kentucky Education Association.

“My experience in the state, and even at the national level, has helped me learn how to network with people and conduct business in a professional manner,” said Sweazy, all qualities she plans to bring to the office of mayor.

Among her long list of goals if elected, Sweazy would primarily like to see Taylorsville have a vision for growth and have a strategic plan outlining how to get there.

“I would also like to see us work on our communication with residents – improve our customer service,” said Sweazy. “It also seems like there is always talk about the need to generate more revenue, but there doesn’t seem to be a lot of discussion about how to spend money wisely.”

Sweazy said there are some big issues facing the city in the next few years, such as the sewer expansion and floodwall re-certification. She said her experience and creditials make her a qualified candidate to deal with these and other city issues.

“I’m excited about this opportunity,” said Sweazy. “and I’m looking forward to listening and meeting with residents so I can better understand their needs.”

All five positions on Taylorsville’s city commission are up for election in November – one for mayor and four commissioner seats. The top four voter-getters in the race for commissioner will be elected.

The last day to file for non-partisan positions in city government is August 10 at 4 p.m.