Gerst says it’s time to get in­volved as com­mis­sioner




— He’s been at­tend­ing town meet­ings for a year, and An­thony “Tony” Gerst fig­ures now is the right time to of­fi­cially get in­volved.

Gerst, 70, is one of three names in the race for com­mis­sioner, which also fea­tures in­cum­bent Ray Ryan III and Robert Ashby, a cur­rent mem­ber of the town plan­ning com­mis­sion. Also in the May 10 elec­tion, Mayor Jim Eber­hardt is run­ning un­op­posed for a sev­enth term.


“I’ve been want­ing to run (for of­fice),” Gerst said. “I’m re­tired now and I have all the time in the world to go around and look at things, talk to peo­ple and see what they want.”

Gerst tried at sev­eral of those town meet­ings to per­suade the mayor and com­mis­sion­ers to aban­don its plans to build a new mu­nic­i­pal cen­ter, fea­tur­ing a larger police head­quar­ters and a much larger town hall and ad­min­is­tra­tion build­ing.

“I would have liked to have seen the town take the clock tower,” he said, re­fer­ring to the build­ing at Aiken and Broad streets. Gerst said that $1 mil­lion pur­chase was a better so­lu­tion than the board’s $7 mil­lion plans.

“But that didn’t work out, and you’ve got to move on,” he said.

He’s lived in Per­ryville since 1993. With his part­ner, Mar­garet Bar­row, he opened Box Car Av­enue. He has since sold the ice cream shop and snack bar on Front Street.

Through the town board, Gerst said he will look out for the needs of the town’s old­est and youngest res­i­dents. What the town needs, ac­cord­ing to Gerst, is more play­grounds and ac­tiv­i­ties in town for the chil­dren.

“I would like to have the same (play­ground equip­ment) they have at the Com­mu­nity Park at Ice­house Park,” Gerst said, adding that ice­house Park is more ac­ces­si­ble to chil­dren on bi­cy­cles.

Gerst said if elected he would like to be ap­pointed the com­mis­sioner in charge of Parks and Re­cre­ation. He also would work to at­tract new re­tail into his adopted home­town.

“I would like to get busi­nesses in town and help the ones that are here,” he said. “I want to see more peo­ple move into town and start busi­nesses.”

He also wants more of the cit­i­zenry to get in­volved in the life of Per­ryville, to sup­port and vol­un­teer for events that at­tract folks to town.

“I want to pro­mote the town,” he said. “I will do my best to help the peo­ple of Per­ryville try to make it a better place for every­body.”


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