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Incumbent Export mayor withdraws from election

| Wednesday, Oct. 9, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

The race for Export mayor is down to one man.

Mayor Michael Calder has withdrawn his candidacy in Nov. 5 election, which leaves former Mayor Bob Campagna as the only person on the November ballot.

Calder, who defeated Campagna in the 2009 Democratic primary, was six votes shy of receiving his party's nomination in the May primary. However, he did receive enough write-in votes from Export Republicans to appear as their candidate on the November ballot.

Those results ultimately led Calder to withdraw from the race.

“I gave my very best effort to Export Borough and its citizens for four years, and during that same time frame, I personally believe that Export enjoyed nearly unthinkable forward progress,” Calder said. “But considering the advancements enjoyed by Export in combination with the primary election results, I decided that it was the appropriate time for me to direct my time and determination elsewhere.”

Calder, 31, said he did want to set the record straight on a rumor that swirled around the borough in the weeks leading up to the primary that Calder did not live in Export. That's not true, he said.

Voter records show that Calder resides along Italy Road — he once publicly offered to allow state police to sit in his driveway to monitor speeding along the road — and he said he has lived in the borough for nearly 10 years.

Calder works as a lawyer in Pittsburgh, and though, he said, he regularly spends long hours away from home, he emphasized that the borough is his home.

Calder said he is proud of what Export has accomplished during his four years in office. He said he feels rewarded knowing his term was honest and diligent.

“I always acted out of a motivation to improve Export Borough without any personal agenda or vendetta,” Calder said. “The projects completed over the past four years altered the trajectory of life in Export Borough for the rest of history, and I will forever marvel at the successes I witnessed while serving along Export's current council.”

Council has accomplished several projects during Calder's four years in office. The Turtle Creek flood-control project came to fruition and was completed. Property taxes were lowered, and a property bequeathed to the borough by a Murrysville businessman was updated and rented out.

Campagna would not comment on Calder's withdrawal from the race and said that he isn't going to “drop his dukes” just yet. Campagna said he expects council to mount a write-in campaign against him with a different candidate.

Daveen Rae Kurutz is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8627, or dkurutz@tribweb.com.

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