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‘Mayor’ always wanted best for town

My Opinion
Jo Ann Spieth-Saylor, Editor

It was bound to happen sooner or later, but I don’t think anyone was expecting Fred Cammack, Corydon’s town manager and long-time president of the Corydon Town Council, to step down last week.
In case you missed the news, Cammack, Corydon’s unofficial ‘mayor,’ resigned Jan. 26 as town manager and board president. He does intend to finish out his current term ‘ his 10th consecutive four-year term ‘ as a council member. There’s been no word whether he will file this year to seek an 11th term. (Those interested in running for office in town elections have until noon on Monday, Aug. 3, to file.)
Cammack, who will be 77 on April 10, was first elected to the town council in 1975 and has served as its president since taking office Jan. 1, 1976. He has spent more than half of his life overseeing the first state capital, his birthplace.
In an interview last year for the Chamber of Commerce of Harrison County’s This is Harrison County magazine, Cammack said he has always been interested in doing what’s good for Corydon.
That’s been evident the past 40 years by numerous projects Cammack has promoted or had a hand in, including replacing and adding sidewalks as needed throughout the town and improving the town’s water supply, which previously came from Big Indian Creek, which sometimes caused worries for many residents during long, dry spells. Now, the town’s water supply is piped from the Ohio River. He has worked to keep taxes low, charge reasonable sewer rates and provide, at no additional charge, the collection of trash, leaves and brush left along the curb by town residents.
Many visitors to the downtown historic district have commented through the years about how clean the town is. Cammack, who is rather modest, would be quick to give credit to the town employees. But without the council funding things like a street sweeper, those workers wouldn’t be able to complete their tasks in such a timely manner.
There are some, myself included, who have wondered why Cammack never pursued incorporating other parts of Corydon, especially the property between S.R. 62 and Interstate 64 from S.R. 135 west to Corydon-Ramsey Road.
As I reflected on Cammack’s tenure, I’ve come to an understanding that more isn’t necessarily a good thing. It’s better to be able to provide excellent services and meet the needs of those you are already required to take care of rather than bite off more than you can chew and have unhappy people who are always complaining about something.
‘I knew we had to be honest, and we had to treat everybody fairly,’ Cammack was quoted as saying last year. ‘And I think that’s been our motto’ since first taking office.
In my 24 years at this newspaper, I have always found Cammack to be honest, fair and willing to answer any questions that I or any other staff member had.
John D. Kintner, a Corydon town council member for the last 8-1/2 years who will succeed Cammack as town manager, has some big shoes to fill. But I have confidence that Cammack has taught him well and will continue to do so for as long as possible. Time will tell.
To Cammack, I say thank you for a job well done. Your position has, undoubtedly, been one that often was thankless. I appreciate your attention to detail and your genuine concern for what has taken place here during the past 40 years. Corydon won’t be the same without you at the helm.