Knox Election 2017: Karl Pritchard for town council

Karl Pritchard

Karl Pritchard

KNOX — Karl Pritchard, a mechanic in the town of Knox, is running for the first time for a town office. Pritchard, who is not enrolled in a party, is running for town council on the Republican line.

Pritchard, 63, has lived in Knox his entire life. He was born on Seaberry Road and grew up on a dairy farm that his father bought in 1962. He worked for some time in building swimming pools; but he started working as a mechanic in 1986 after his hand was crushed in a cement mixer. He opened his own business in 1988, and works on car repairs as well as used-car sales.

“I’ve never been involved in politics before. I’m not sure if I’m going to be good at it,” he said.

Pritchard said that he knows several people in the town government and appreciates their ideas, such as Supervisor Vasilios Lefkaditis and Councilwoman Amy Pokorny, who are running against one another for town supervisor. But Pritchard said that he does not find some of their decisions or ideas suitable for the town.

“Some of the stuff that’s going on, I just don’t think it fits our character,” he said, noting the grant for an electric-vehicle charging station that was not approved this winter. “I think it was a good idea; I just don’t think it’s the best idea for Knox.”

Pritchard said he would like to see if he can do something good for the town, noting that it is a community made up of many people he has known for some time.

Regarding the business district, Pritchard said that there should be a bigger district area for businesses.

“To me, trying to put in a small business district without much land is not the right way to go about it,” he said. “It should be a bigger district area.”

Pritchard said he believes that more businesses would help decrease taxes, and would make a difference in the area, although he is not sure what the best way to bring them in would be, other than expanding business districts.

He said he has not observed enough of the meetings to make a decision about the town board’s going against the recommendation of the planning board and conservation advisory council.

Regarding capital projects, Pritchard said that he was not sure what should take priority, but he said that the town’s employees at the highway garage should have decent working conditions and have things such as their water quality improved.

“The town garage should be taken care of,” he said. “You’ve got a lot of employees there.”

He said he has not been to the transfer station and does not know if the building or the employees there need improved conditions.

Regarding shared services, Pritchard said the highway workers should stay in the town and continue working on the town roads.

The Climate Smart Communities grant should be used, if it can be, to improve the town garage, he said.

Pritchard said, of tax revaluation, that he has not found many people to be upset with their taxes, and believes it is probably close to being a fair rate.

If the town ever decided to go above the 3-percent tax-levy limit increase, “It’d have be something very extreme,” Pritchard said.

“I don’t think you should go above the 2-percent,” he added.

When looking at the town’s issues with managing solid waste, Pritchard said that it is necessary for everyone to work at recycling everything that could be recycled, in order to combat increasing solid waste for the long-term.

“We can’t just keep burying trash in the ground somewhere,” he said, noting that businesses often create more easily disposable products.

He said he is not sure what should be done in the short term for the town.

He concluded that he’d like to be offered a chance to try and serve the town.

 

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