PARKERSBURG - Belpre Mayor Mike Lorentz said things are improving in the city and he wants to continue working toward prosperity.
Lorentz, a Democrat, has announced he will seek a second term as Belpre's mayor.
"We have gotten some places cleaned up around here and helped change the attitude people have toward our city," he said.
The primary election is scheduled for May 3. So far, Lorentz is the only candidate to have taken out petitions to run for mayor.
Lorentz said the announcement that Marietta Memorial Hospital will build a facility in Belpre has been a major positive for the city, and he's expecting more to come. Lorentz said there has been interest in the vacant Lee Middleton Dolls building as well as other business seeking to expand and change.
"We have some progress in economic development," he said. "People are wanting to build here."
Lorentz plans to build a small team to produce a 10-year vision for city. Within that team, Lorentz wants to include some of the city's future leaders, school children. Lorentz said he was impressed by input he received from students during an event where they spent time at the city building and participated in a council meeting.
Lorentz also wants input from business leaders. Lorentz said Belpre needs more interaction with its citizens. He's encouraging residents to become more active in the city, in government, business and education.
"There were things we were working on before I ever committed to run again," He said. "Once the mayor gets it started and everybody gets an equal voice, whether I am here or not, it will carry on."
Other Belpre officials who have picked up petitions to run for re-election are city council members Linda Mulligan Boso, R-at large; Deborah Marshall, D-2nd Ward; and Dewey Robinson, D-4th Ward, according to officials with the Washington County Board of Elections.
The council president and law director posts will also be on the ballot, but as of Wednesday afternoon, no petitions had been picked up for them.