By MORGAN FRISCH
Recorder News Staff
FONDA — Matthew Ossenfort is nearing his first completed term as Montgomery County Executive and to date, no one has filed a petition to challenge his candidacy in this year’s election.
Petitions were due to the Montgomery County Board of Elections by 5 p.m. Thursday. Independent petitions are due Aug. 22 and objections on Monday.
Ossenfort filed on the Republican and Conservative Party lines. He announced his bid for re-election in May surrounded by friends and family at the Amsterdam Municipal Golf Course. During the celebration, he reminisced about his candidacy and how the focus was on collaboration and working as a team. He said creating an atmosphere where people wanted to work helped push bold ideas forward in the county.
The Beech-Nut site, Dollar General Distribution Center project and the Canalway Trail Restoration were three significant projects he labeled as a success. In the last few months, ground broke at Dollar General and resolutions were passed to move forward with the foreclosure of the Beech-Nut site. Ossenfort also spearheaded the county’s Municipal Consolidation and Efficiency Plan (MCEP) application submitted in June, in hopes of winning the $20 million state prize.
Ossenfort defeated Democrat Dominick Stagliano in November 2013. He said his first year in office involved the transitioning of the county government from a board of supervisors to its current two-branch form, and tackling issues such as the dissolution of the Montgomery-Otsego-Schoharie Solid Waste Management Authority and the settlement of union contracts. He was also focused on budget season, which included establishing a spending plan for 2015 that lowered the county’s debt and stayed under the tax cap.
During his second year in office, Ossenfort cited receiving the Regional Economic Development Council awards as a major accomplishment. For 2016, Ossenfort said private sector job growth was up and unemployment rates were hitting the lowest they’ve been in 10 years.
During his announcement speech, Ossenfort said he knew he wanted to run for re-election after thinking about his team and how much they’ve invested.
“It’s more of a decision to keep moving forward,” he said during the speech.
The primaries will take place Sept. 12 with the general election Nov. 7.