But on Sept. 26, she’ll have a challenger in the name of Kenneth Reid.
Reid, who had intended to run for a second consecutive term on council, made the decision to instead run for mayor when it looked like the position would be uncontested.
“I decided to give the people a choice,” he said. “Not fair if they can’t choose. I figured at least have a race. They might choose the same mayor again, but at least they can choose.”
Reid has served on council for over two years.
For her part, Fitzgerald has served as mayor for the last four years and is the current small towns director with Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador.
She believes her experience is important and says she wants to continue what she’s started.
She says her priority for the town is to build a sustainable future; to do this, she believes the economy has to be built around forestry.
Therefore, she wants to see a pellet plant opened in Roddickton-Bide Arm to bring employment.
“I have two boys and they believe there’s no better place out there than Roddickton-Bide Arm,” she added. “And if I don’t do something now, there won’t be no ‘later on.’”
She feels council needs to improve the economy to keep her children and other young people in the town.
Also high on her agenda is resolving issues with wastewater in the municipality, something she has been working on and one of many projects she wishes to see through.
Fitzgerald calls herself a “mover and a shaker” and says she’ll continue to be a loud voice for small towns.
She believes the experience she brings to the table, on both council and MNL, is crucial.
“We don’t have all this big expertise at our disposal like other bigger towns,” she said. “We don’t have engineers and people that are certified this and that. We have to be able to connect with other towns who have it, or people within government or municipal affairs. And I have those connections. I know when something goes wrong, where I can go to navigate through that.”
Reid, 33, believes he can represent the perspective of younger people in the community.
“A lot of the people that I know from the town are the younger people,” he said.
He hopes to see a number of projects completed in the town. For instance, he’d like to see the skate park and ball field better kept up.
And like Fitzgerald, Reid hopes to see projects completed that the previous council had started.
He, too, believes a prospective pellet plant would be vital to the town.
Reid wished Fitzgerald luck and said he’d accept the result if she were to win.
He wanted to tell the public to get out and vote.
“It doesn’t matter who you vote for, just make your vote count,” he added.