OSWEGO, N.Y. — At the age of 25, Billy Barlow Jr., became New York State’s youngest elected mayor in history in 2016.
“I think it’s helped me grow perhaps faster than a normal person I guess would from 25 to 29.” Barlow said while discussing what it’s like to be mayor at such a young age.
However, he does not let his age define his character.
“It’s not a side gig for me,” Barlow said. “I consider this to be a full time job. It’s my primary responsibility when I wake up.”
Throughout his first term as mayor, Barlow’s goals focused on improving the standard of living in the City of Oswego.
“Introduce residential living, give people more things to do, and connect our downtown to our waterfront were the three main key components,” Barlow said.
Although, given the current circumstances with the Coronavirus pandemic, Barlow has now deemed it a priority to keep the community safe as he begins his second term as Mayor.
“That was really the first and primary goal,” Barlow said. “Keep people informed, tell them what city government’s doing to protect them, help businesses and people weather the lockdown.”
Additionally, Barlow’s focus also remains on keeping track of future projects, such as multiple upgrades to the city’s waterfront.
“We’re bringing people in both from land and the water to experience oswego’s waterfront, check out Wright’s Landing Marina, the new International Pier will be a boardwalk, and to get people into our downtown,” Barlow said.
But beyond the big ideas, Barlow finds it important to remind himself of the reality of his role.
“And at the end of the day that’s what the government’s job is,” Barlow said. “That’s what my job is. It’s to help my neighbor.”