Augusta County’s Pastures District, on the western edge of the county and bordering with Bath and Highland counties, has three library branches, more than any of he seven districts. That is a direct result of Supervisor Tracy Pyles’ work to bring that community resource to his far-reaching areas of Deerfield and Craigsville in addition to Churchville.
That is just one of the improvements Tracy has brought to Pastures, where there is more national forest land than private land, and houses can be few and far between.
Tracy won a close re-election Tuesday night against Chris Morrison whose family owns the IGA grocery store in Craigsville, bringing in 52 percent to 48 percent.
On a low-budget campaign that included yard signs — no large ones — his only political mailer was an 8.5×11-inch letter noting his 20 years helping Pastures, with a short bullet list of accomplishments and ending, “I sincerely ask for your vote.”
Probably something in that letter said more about Tracy than anything else: “I learned that if I waited and hoped others would look out for my District, I would be waiting and hoping for a long time.”
Pastures District isn’t the most populous nor does it have shopping centers and fast food joints to bring in tax dollars. It needed a squeaky wheel, and Tracy filled that need. He has taken on the Staunton News Leader, other supervisors, bureaucracy, and others to get the help needed for his district. He’s also not afraid to take on county government itself, an honest representative, who truly looks out for the bottom line to save money for his constituents.
Along the way, he has worked with other supervisors and economic development folks to increase fire and rescue personnel, bring in new industry, and expand existing businesses such as Hershey, McKee, Daikin, and Shamrock Dairies.
More than $100 million has been spent in new schools, Middle River Regional Jail, Juvenile Detention Center, School Board offices in Verona, fire training burn building, Churchville library, Deerfield Community Center, Stuarts Draft, Augusta Springs, and Deerfield parks, Deerfield water system, and Craigsville town hall and library.
Utilizing the “rural rustic roads” initiative, gravel roads in rural areas have been paved making transportation easier for those who live there, and other transportation investments have resulted in upgrades, improvements, and new roadways in Pastures and countywide.
All that and more keep this man I call “Mr. Money” going and, with his retirement a couple of years ago from ASR, he has more time to invest in the people of Pastures.
Congratulations to Tracy Pyles on his reelection.