By Clint Confehr
Senior Staff Writer
A state-licensed bail bondsman, who's been outspoken about City Hall activities, has filed a petition at the election office to be named on Lewisburg's May 7 ballot as a candidate for mayor.
In doing so, Michael Farrar is competing with Jim Bingham, a professional engineer who's serving as chairman of the city planning commission, for the office being vacated by Mayor Barbara Woods.
Bingham announced his candidacy three weeks ago. Early voting starts April 17. The last day to register to vote is April 8. There are 6,183 people registered to vote in the city election.
"I want to revitalize the thoughtful, innovative, risk-taking, concerned, compassionate quirkiness that has been Lewisburg," Farrar said in a three-page announcement that he's running for mayor.
Farrar's bail bonding business is in the stone building on the northeast corner of First Avenue and Church Street. It's included a restaurant but a hair salon is in that space now.
The shared lawn at the corner is where he's had a white board sign.
"Some of you may only know me as the guy who voiced his concerns on large signs on the square in protest to this current administration, or the bail bondsman on the corner," Farrar said.
Woods wrote to Farrar about the protests, suggesting a less confrontational approach and, during an interview last month, Farrar said he's accepted her advice.
"I have some ideas about how to make this truly wonderful community we call home even greater and how to sustain this greatness," Farrar said.
"The current administration has had its try at it," he said. "I feel it's time for someone outside of this current administration to bring in those new ideas."
Farrar wants to improve Lewisburg public square, revitalize Rock Creek Park, instill respect and civility in public discourse, ensure high levels of public service from the city, exercise sound fiscal management, build local partnerships to develop educational opportunities to young people, and enhance Lewisburg's natural and business environment.
Farrar has fostered a taxicab service serving city residents and he was a driving force behind a game room on the south side of the square.
"I'm convinced that Lewisburg can reassert its legacy," Farrar said in a prepared announcement, adding that he's starting his campaign by listening to voters.