Two newcomers run for two council seats


Two newcomers to politics are the only candidates for two seats on the Smithsburg Town Council in the May 14 election.

James LaFemina, 39, of Rebecca's Court, has been a customer center manager for American Freightways in Winchester, Va., for two years.

LaFemina said American Freightways, which is part of the shipping company FedEx, handles "less than truckload" pickups and deliveries between businesses.


Before joining American Freightways, he spent 13 years with a trucking company on Maryland's eastern shore.

LaFemina and his wife, Paula, have a 9-year-old son, Billy, and a 7-year-old daughter, Zoe. They moved to Smithsburg in 1998.

"My wife and I ... are very pleased with Smithsburg and wanted to become more active in the day-to-day operations of the town," LaFemina said of his first run for elected office.

As councilman, LaFemina said he would concentrate on controlling development "to keep the growth in check, so we don't grow faster than our current infrastructure can support."

He also wants to work on plans for a new library branch. "Literacy and education are two very important things," he said.

Ralph J. Regan, 46, of Maple Avenue, has been a regional sales representative for Ark Systems Inc. at Fort Ritchie in Cascade, Md., for eight months.

Regan said Ark Systems integrates low-voltage electronic systems, such as fire alarms and intercoms.

He and his wife, Sue, have three children - Justin, 18; Jacqui, 16; and Frank, 12.

Regan said his family has lived in Smithsburg for 16 years.

When he heard that two Town Council seats were opening up, he decided, "I'll give something back."

Homer Myers - a neighbor whose wife, Mildred, is running for mayor - helped convince him to run for the first time, Regan said.

"I'd just like to continue the effective financial policies of looking for state money," Regan said.

The two Town Council seats are up for grabs because Councilman Charlie Slick is not running again and Councilman Mike Rohrer is running for mayor after one term on the council.

Rohrer is running against Mildred "Mickey" Myers, who previously served as mayor and councilwoman.

Mayor Tommy Bowers is not seeking re-election.

Ballots can be cast at Smithsburg Town Hall from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday. Write-in votes will be allowed.

The terms for mayor and council are four years. The salaries are $2,000 a year for mayor and $1,000 for council member.

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