Downtown Albany’s most prolific landowner, who aspires to open a prayer museum in the heart of the community, has broadened his vision: He wants to be Albany’s mayor in 2011.
Peter Studl, who has recently been seeking to bring a new arena football team to the community should the South Georgia Wildcats or its parent league fail, is the second announced candidate in the next mayoral election, which is more than 25 months away. Kirk Smith, a trucker and community advocate, also says he plans to run for mayor.
The city has three political races this fall – for Wards 2, 3 and 5.
Adams was elected in 2004 and re-elected in 2007. While elections are usually held in November; newly elected political officials usually take office in January.
Like Smith, Studl says the city is essentially leaderless and misguided under Adams.
“I am starting this process much earlier than is typical, but the issues facing Albany are becoming more serious everyday,” Studl said. “Unless Mayor Adams chooses to resign his office early, we have no choice but to wait about 28 months to bring about major change at the commission level. But we can continue to press this administration on critical issues and we can prepare to act immediately and aggressively once there is an administration change.”
Studl and Adams clearly are adversaries. Adams was harshly critical of Studl last winter when Studl was cited for violating the city’s sign ordinance and structural codes by erecting three crosses atop his Exchange Building on North Washington Street. Studl, who says the crosses weren’t signs and that he is being selectively targeted by city officials, removed the crosses rather than fighting his case in court.
He says new city leadership is needed to push for “safety, education and opportunity.”
“Our team will not be a mere collection of titles and ceremonial functions,” he said. “Ours will be a four-year task-force mentality — a get-it-done-now attitude. “We will seek new revenues for our community rather than take customers from one business to give to another. People will be invited to offer their ideas and contributions. We will solicit the support of our friends in the current administration in Washington and in business and industry around the United States. All activities will be high-energy and open to public scrutiny at all legal levels. Doesn’t that sound refreshing?”
As is characteristic of the city administration, which regularly violates government-in-the-sunshine regulations, Adams does not return the Journal’s phone calls for input on news stories.