Four Vying For Three Seats In New Market

Council Election Set For May

Posted: March 26, 2014

Incumbent New Market Town Council members John Blosser, Gary Comer and Peggy Harkness are hoping for another four years in office, but James Stroop Jr. is running to unseat one of them in the May election.

Blosser, 74, who is finishing out his third consecutive term and served one four-year term on council in the 1970s, said he doesn’t have any specific goals if re-elected.

But he is proud of what council’s been able to accomplish and hopes to continue moving New Market forward.

Blosser, also serving as the town’s current vice mayor, is especially proud of the 2008 decision to join in with the Broadway Regional Sewer Plant operations in 2010 instead of upgrading the town’s system. That move, he says, has saved New Market millions of dollars.

Comer, 63, who has been on council since 1998, said he’s also pleased with the way things are going.

“We have a good working council, and we do the best we can,” he said, adding that he does not have a specific agenda in mind if he gets re-elected.

Harkness, 65, is running for her first full term as a member of council. She was appointed in July 2012 to fill the seat left vacant when Doug Bradley was elected mayor.

Harkness ran unopposed in a special election in November 2012.

She said it’s important to her to develop the community in a way that attracts organizations and businesses, and to help increase the tax base. At the same time, she said, the need to balance that with maintaining the town’s charm should also be a consideration.

“There are limitations on what any one person can do,” Harkness said. “While we may be the town’s leaders, it takes the entire community.”

Stroop, 64, previously served on council from 2000 to 2004, but was defeated in his re-election bid. He said he wants to serve another term to help make the town a better place to live.

 “Hopefully, we can put our heads together and come up with a way to soften the budget a little bit to make it easier on the townspeople, and maybe even offer the townspeople a little more service,” he said.

The council consists of six members, plus the mayor. Terms expire in 2016 for Mayor Douglas Bradley and Councilmen Tim Palmer, Scott Wymer and Eddie Litten.

The deadline for filing as a candidate in this year’s election was March 4.

Election Day is May 6.

Contact Jonathon Shacat at 574-6286 or

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