BRADLEY — Mike Watson is seeking to have the “Pro Tem” removed from his municipal job title in Bradley.
Watson, along with three village trustee candidates and the village clerk candidate, were among others who have filed for elected office in Bradley.
Joining Watson on the Progressive Citizens Party ticket for the spring 2021 election are first-term trustees Ryan LeBran and Brian Teiri, as well as Grant Vandenhout. The village clerk candidate is Julie Tambling, who was appointed to the position after the resignation of then-clerk Mike LaGesse.
Watson was not the only mayoral candidate to file, however. Gene Jordan, owner of Glassworks, 1034 W. Broadway St., Bradley, has filed as a Democratic Party candidate. Also seeking a trustee position is Josh Glenzinkski, a Democrat.
The municipal election is April 6.
The election in Bradley also will include a full slate of candidates from the newly former Bradley Citizens United Party, which is being led by former Bradley Trustee Lori Gadbois, who is running for Bradley mayor.
Watson said he is proud of what the village has accomplished since late April 2019, the time he was elected as mayor pro tem by the village board following the resignation of then-Mayor Bruce Adams.
“We are having great success. We are doing things this village has never done before,” he said this week. “We can make a real positive difference. I believe a substantial impact can be made with four more years.”
The 2021 election will mark the third time Watson has sought the Bradley mayor’s position. He was defeated in the three-person spring 2013 election and then in the 2017 municipal elections. He was defeated in each campaign by then-Mayor Bruce Adams.
Watson, 58, of South Quincy Avenue, Bradley, was mayor of the tiny Kankakee County community of Sammons Point — estimated population was 265 in 2018 — from 2006-12 prior to seeking the Bradley position.
“I’m working to clean up this village from the financial aspect,” Watson said of his time leading Bradley. “That’s where part of my energy has gone.”
Concerning successes since taking over the mayor’s office, Watson points to the successful sales tax referendum. The increase revenue, he has noted, will allow the village to rebate the village’s share of property taxes back to residents. He also pointed to Bradley public safety dispatchers joining KANCOM, the countywide dispatch center, as well as upgrades within the Bradley Fire Department.
The village also has been working to put together coordinated master development plans for Kinzie Avenue, the Northfield Square mall property and West Broadway Street. Under Watson leadership, Bradley purchased the former Carson’s men’s store in the mall, but plans have not yet come forward.