SARANAC LAKE - Ten days after he stopped actively campaigning to deal with a serious family medical issue, Harrietstown supervisor candidate Tom Catillaz says he's resuming his run.
"I'm gearing up," Catillaz told the Enterprise this morning. "I'm back in it. Things have calmed down a little bit in my life, and I'm refocused again. I really do want the job. I think I can do a good job at it. I'm excited about it, and I think I can win this."
Catillaz said he hadn't even told his campaign supporters, including Mayor Clyde Rabideau and Friends of Tom Catillaz Chairman Chad McCarthy, about his decision to rejoin the race. The current trustee and former mayor, a Democrat, is pitted against Republican town Councilman Bob Bevilacqua.
"It's my decision, not anybody else's," he said. "They don't know about it yet."
On Oct. 9, the Friends of Tom Catillaz announced in a press release that Catillaz was suspending his active campaign due to serious family medical issue out of state. The move led to the cancelation of a debate between the two candidates that had been scheduled to take place Oct. 16.
Catillaz declined to go into more detail about the medical issue during this morning's conversation, other than saying, "We got a little more information, and things will be alright."
Catillaz said he plans to meet with his campaign team tonight and reorganize. He said the Friends of Tom Catillaz Facebook page, much of which was taken down after the Oct. 9 announcement, will be ramped up again. Catillaz said he's also planning to host a chicken barbecue fundraiser at the Waterhole bar the weekend before the election.
"I'll be out banging on doors this weekend, and we'll be back in the swing of it," he said.
Asked if he'd be willing to participate in a debate before the election, Catillaz said he didn't know.
"If time permits," he said. "It's going to be a really hectic next two weeks. I'd probably try."
Contacted at work this morning, Bevilacqua didn't have much to say about Catillaz resuming his campaign.
"I'm glad his family's doing better," he said. "We haven't changed anything. We're just going to keep on moving forward."
Bevilacqua agreed that it would be difficult to schedule a debate at this point, but if it can be done, he said he would participate.
Earlier this week, the Enterprise reported that Bevilacqua and his supporters had raised about twice as much money as Catillaz - $6,970 compared to $3,130.
Asked about the numbers today, Catillaz noted that much of Bevilacqua's lead came from "a very generous older sister," referring to a $2,928 contribution from Bevilacqua's sister Cherrie Sayles.
"There's nothing wrong with that," he said. "You know, instead of raising money, I've been out knocking on doors. I've got at least three-quarters of the village done, and I've been out three times to Lake Clear. In my opinion, that's very important to the people. We do have to raise some money because we're going to take some ads out in the paper and on the radio."
The election on Nov. 6 is for a one-year supervisor term that became available following the resignation of Larry Miller earlier this year. A full four-year supervisor term will be on the ballot in 2013.