ALBANY -- Incumbent Mayor Gene Glasscock wants another four years in office, but he will face opposition from two candidates in the Nov. 6 primary election.
Residents Eileen Bates McCarroll and Richard Herring Jr. will also vie for Glasscock's seat. Both seek a change in direction for the town of 1,100 on the east end of Livingston Parish, while Glasscock wants to continue the work he has implemented the last four years.
The three candidates will discuss their platforms in a forum presented by the Livingston Parish Chamber of Commerce on Oct. 16 at the Albany-Springfield Library. The event begins with a meet and greet at 5:30 p.m. and a forum at 6 p.m.
Here's a look at three candidates in the race:
Incumbent Mayor Gene Glasscock said another four years in office would enable him to finish what he has started.
A second term would allow for completion of a sewer project to connect services to the south side of Interstate 12, Glasscock said. He believes it would work wonders for the town's growth.
"It would break things wide open to attract a lot of business and enable a lot of property to be developed," Glasscock said. "This will give us the opportunity to spread."
Glasscock also touted his work on an emergency preparedness and safeguarding public works, something he implemented with Fire Chief Joe Foster, who serves as incident commander for the town.
The August 2016 put many of the town's goals on hold. The ongoing construction of a new town hall tops the current work order, but other items rank high on the drawing board.
Glasscock said he is negotiating with Weyerhauser Co. for expansion of the sewer system, while he also remains in talks with FEMA on the system incurred during the flood.
The Weyerhuaser sewer line would bring an additional $7,500-$8000 per month to the town, Glasscock said.
Turning lanes in high-traffic areas along La. 43 -- the main artery, along with US 190 -- also ranks high on the work list for the next four years, he said.
The annexation of areas north of I-12 has brought McDonald's and two convenience stores into the town limits, which has helped boost revenue on the municipal one-cent sales tax, he said.
"We're doing pretty well, holding well with finances, business are coming back and the tax base is picking up," he said.
Glasscock, a lifelong resident of Albany, worked in the petrochemical industry until his retirement 20 years ago. He served 16 years on the town council, and has also worked as a volunteer firefighter.
His public service also includes a stint on the Livingston Parish Planning Commission, and three years on the board for the Livingston Parish Council on Aging.
Glasscock also served three years on the Mosquito Abatement Board, which was abolished in 2015.
He is a member of the AmVets organization and the American Legion Post 258, where he serves in its honor guard.
Glasscock also belongs to VFW chapter in Hammond.
EILEEN BATES McCARROL
McCarroll believes the town needs changes, and that it will take new leader to bring them to fruition.
She does not believe the current administration has taken an aggressive approach to progress.
"It's been a "Band-Aid" approach in Albany, and I don't think that's a healthy growth," McCaroll said. "It's been more reactive than proactive."
Residential and commercial growth, improved infrastructure and annexation top McCarroll's priority list.
"I think Albany is a gem that needs to be polished, and I believe I'm the person who can tout the many great assets we have here in Albany," McCarroll said. "I'm not sure the current administration is actually out there pursuing and selling Albany."
To achieve those goals, town needs to tout the high performance of the school system, the low crime rate and the fire department's No. 3 rating to lure more residential and commercial growth to the area, she said.
McCarroll also wants to implement improvements to the town sewage system and widening of La. 43 to a three-lane thoroughfare to improve traffic flow.
"I feel like I've been training for this all my career. I've been confident about it, and I feel I have the qualifications for Albany to grow."
McCarroll believes her 30-plus years in governmental work make her the most qualified candidate to serve the next four years as mayor.
She served as executive director of the Louisiana State Pardon Board during the administrations of Mike Foster, Kathleen Babineaux Blanco and Bobby Jindal.
McCarroll testified before the state legislature on issues regarding the pardon board and dealt with the state Department of Corrections on budgetary issues.
Her resume also includes 18 years in the District Attorney's Office as a parish administrator. She has also worked with the Livingston Parish Council on budget issues, which involved work with judges, the sheriff, clerk of court and parish council members.
She has also worked as a paralegal and served as Albany town clerk in the early 1980s under then-Mayor George Stewart.
"I'm aware of the legal aspects to get things accomplished," she said. "I feel comfortable with work in government and I feel I have the ability to meet people and get things done."
RICHARD HERRING JR.
The races marks Herring's first bid for a public office.
At 31, the lifelong Albany resident is the youngest of the three candidates. He works in the part and sales department at Camping World in Pumpkin Center.
He is unmarried and has no children, but he wants to see the town become more attractive for young families looking to settle.
A change in leadership would mark the best approach to change, Herring said.
"It's not that our leaders didn't do a good job when they were elected, but we need a change and we need someone willing to move our town forward," he said. "I'm not just in this for myself."
Herring also wants the town to expand on park development on the heels of the project two Albany High School seniors developed as the town's first recreational facility.
A new approach to development of the town and a more aggressive move to attract new businesses rank high on Herring's priority list.
"We have a lot of property and a lot of vacant buildings," he said. "We need someone to do the right thing for the town and its people, and not just do it for the fun of it."
Infrastructure also needs more attention, Herring said.
The town needs to make a more diligent effort to secure funds to improve roads, water and sewage, he said.
"We can't afford for the rates to keep rising, and with the $4 million debt issue coming up, it doesn't look too good," Herring said. "We need to get revenues other ways than just raising rates."
Herring said he never expects Albany to become a large city, but he believes town leaders have resisted progress.
"There are a lot of old-timers who don't want to see our community grow, which is a shame because we have a lot of businesses that are struggling," Herring said. "Right now, there's nothing to draw people Albany, so I'd like to see something here along the lines of a water park ... something that would bring people to Albany and keep our small businesses going."
The town needs to become more open to businesses, including those which may opt to sell alcohol -- a move which require the municipality to strike down its anti-liquor laws.
"We've had other businesses wanting to come here, but it's all about those who are in here ... old-timers who don't want change," Herring said. "We have potential and it needs to happen."
He also believes it's time to strike down the ban on liquor sales in the corporate limits.
"Why not issue liquor licenses here?" he said. "It's time for us to keep the tax dollars here and for us to keep the revenue from it."