'Festus' in race for mayor again

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Richard "Festus" Hagins wants to be Hayden's next mayor -- again.

"I've stayed up with all that's been happening since the two years I've been off the board, and it's been an eye-opening experience seeing it from the other side," said Hagins, who recently declared his candidacy for the seat being vacated by Mayor Charles Grobe.

Hagins, a 16-year resident of Hayden, was mayor from 1996 to '98 and has served two terms as a trustee on the Hayden Town Board. He is the chairman of the Parks and Recreation board, and he has worked for the Wagner Equipment Company for 27 years.

Hagins said he hopes he can use his past experience to help manage the town's growth. With three trustee positions up for election, Hagins said it is especially important to have someone with experience that can work with a potentially new Town Board.

"I was on the board for many years, and I knew there was going to be a transition coming up with three members being term limited," Hagins said.

Town Board trustees are limited to two four-year terms, meaning trustees Crecencio "Chencho" Salazar and Tim Frentress will give up their seats in April. Grobe also is term limited after serving three two-year terms.

Grobe could, however, run for trustee, and Salazar and Frentress could run for mayor.

With the town losing as many as four experienced officials, Town Manager Russ Martin hopes the people who run for the seats are familiar with the town's comprehensive plan and code updates.

Nomination petitions for three trustee positions and mayor are available.

Interested candidates need to collect 10 signatures from registered voters who live within town limits and return the petitions by 5 p.m. March 3. The election is April 4.

Qualified candidates must be U.S. citizens, at least 18 years old, residents of Hayden for at least 12 consecutive months before Election Day and registered voters.

Residency must be maintained throughout the term in office. For more information, call Hayden Town Clerk Lisa Dowling at 276-3741.

-- To reach Matt Stensland, call 871-4210

or e-mail mstensland@steamboatpilot.com

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