Metamora fill-in president won't run for re-election

Nick Vlahos Gatehouse News Service

METAMORA — When he became village president of Metamora, John Heinz didn't necessarily seek the job. He doesn't plan to seek election to it next year, either.

"It's time, I think," Heinz, the acting village president, said Wednesday in revealing he will not run for a full term. "It's just time for me to do some other things. You can't do both."

Another member of the Village Board wants the top job. Walt Laylock announced last week he's running for the position Bill Belshaw held until April, when he died. When Belshaw died, fellow trustees voted to replace him with Heinz.

"I have the highest regard and dedication to public office," Laylock said Thursday. "I don't cater to special interests. I just want to do the best I can and give the community as much as I can."

The 2013 municipal election is in April.

The presidential term expires at the same time as Heinz's trustee term. He is not seeking re-election to that post, one he has held since 2007.

Since Belshaw's death, Heinz served as president and trustee concurrently. The retired electrical engineer at Caterpillar Inc. had been president pro tem.

Laylock has been a Metamora trustee since 2007. Prior to that, the senior project team leader at Caterpillar was a trustee in Forsyth, located north of Decatur.

"We have a well-rounded residential base, but we've got to have more businesses," Laylock said about his current hometown. "The community will die eventually if it relies only on its residential base."

Thus far, Laylock is the only declared candidate for president, according to Heinz, who supports him.

A candidate caucus is set for 7 p.m. Monday at the Metamora American Legion hall.