By Rich Place
For village mayor Bill Krebs, now isn’t the time to slow down.
Continuing to build on momentum of his previous three terms, Krebs is seeking re-election to his fourth term in office in an uncontested race for mayor.
“It’s not the time to sit back and say ‘things are going too good, we’ll just keep doing what we do,’” he said. “You can’t do that. We’ve got too many other things we have to do. We have to keep moving forward and keep building relationships.”
After a dozen years as village mayor, his expected next term would add to an extensive political career that dates back to the early ‘90s and includes time as a village trustee and on the village planning board.
His time as mayor has allowed Krebs and those he has worked with to develop long term planning, which he said is one of the primary reasons the village is a position he’s proud of today.
He said a lot of the work that goes on behind the scenes — like the budget planning, engineering, legal negotiations and more — all contribute to provide village residents with efficient essential services, public safety and maintained parks, roads and sidewalks.
“That’s what we do quite well as a village,” Krebs said. “It’s multifaceted and a lot of work is done behind the scenes.”
But as another answer to why he believes Springville is a great place to live, Krebs didn’t hesitate to credit the residents.
“It’s just because of the people who live here,” he added. “This is a very friendly town and village to live in. We have a very nice downtown area here. We have a lot of doctors here, the school district is great, there are plenty of churches. It’s just walkable.”
Krebs noted the community’s relatively high walkability score helps tie much of the village together through a network of sidewalks and crosswalks.
In seeking re-election, Krebs expects to continue overseeing a handful of projects currently in the works, including a project scheduled for next year to improve the sidewalks and bicycle use in some of the streets in Springville. The grant is funded in part by the state DOT, he said.
“We want to continue to stay on the radar of New York state and Erie County agencies for other grants to improve our village and, through my experience and what I’ve done, I can really help Springville do that,” he said.
Krebs said during his tenure as mayor he has improved the financial standing of the village, and cites keeping that momentum going under his leadership as one of the primary reasons for again seeking re-election this year.
“It’s important that Springville remains financially in a well-positioned place,” he said. “That’s why I ran: I didn’t want Springville to slip into a complacency where there’s no long-term planning and elected officials go down a short-term track of not seeing how important planning is. I want to see that continue.”
Although admitting larger projects span across multiple terms of office, Krebs said he had a handful of potential projects he hopes he, along with other village officials, can focus on. One of them includes seeing streetscape improvements on West Main Street from South Cascade Drive to the village center.
“At least twice we’ve gone to DOT with ideas and looking for grants and we have not been successful,” he said. “That’s a big project that would require DOT help. So I would anticipate in the next few years we’d try that again. That part of Main Street needs some work.”
The Rails to Trails project also needs to be seen through to completion, he said. Plus, it’s likely Eaton Park will see some attention in the next few years once funding can be allocated for its improvement. There’s also some projects on village utilities that he knows are coming up, too.
Overseeing these projects as they continue — or, in some cases, getting potential projects started — will likely be done by Krebs in his fourth term, given his uncontested race for mayor.
“I’ve always had, when I run for re-election, a sense that there’s issues that need to be addressed and projects that need to be completed for Springville to continue to move forward,” he said. “That’s the way I feel now.”