01/20/08 — Bud Gray announces he's running for re-election

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Bud Gray announces he's running for re-election

By Matthew Whittle
Published in News on January 20, 2008 12:30 PM

Roland "Bud" Gray, this year's chairman of the Wayne County Board of Commissioners, announced Friday that he has decided to run for a second term in office.

His reasoning, he explained, is simple.

He wants to see some of the county's projects through to completion.

"We've got so many projects going on right now, especially with the schools," Gray said. "I think the board pretty much needs to stay together. They've got a good working relationship, the board does. And I think they really want to do the right thing for the county and the schools."

Other projects, he continued, include the completion of the Jeffrey's Building, where the county's 911 center is located, as well as other capital projects including the county's libraries.

"We've got to do something about the libraries. The librari-es need some major renovations," he said.

He also said that he wants to see the county's utilities commission -- a committee of county, municipal and sanitary district officials -- continue its work toward greater cooperation and interconnectivity.

"I'd love to see more water and sewer," he said.

But really, he continued, his main reason for running again is to help continue the work now underway with the school system.

It's one reason he ran the first time in 2004 -- that and to help improve the county's emergency services.

"I've been associated with the fire departments all my life, and I just thought I could help make a Wayne County a better county for all our citizens, especially in terms of fire, EMS and the Sheriff's Office, because I've done all three, " Gray said.

It is, he added, simply a matter of being able to lend a hand.

"I just like helping people," he said. "When it gets to where I can't help people, I'll go back to the farm I guess."

But for now, he feels like he still has something to contribute, and right now, he believes that continuity in the leadership is important.

"I'll have had four years on the job and it takes a while to learn what the county's needs are," he explained. "I always thought the county had plenty of money, but when you get in that seat, you find out they don't have enough."

Still, after spending years out in the community -- 51 and counting on the active roster at New Hope Fire Department and 37 as chief -- Gray, 67-years-old and a farmer near Eastern Wayne High School, has found satisfaction in being the District 5 commissioner.

"I've enjoyed it so far -- doing things for people who can't do for themselves, trying to make the schools better for our children, creating more jobs and trying to make Wayne County a better place to live and grow," he said.