LODI — Outgoing Republican Supervisor Lee Davidson has endorsed Kyle Barnhart to be his successor.

In a message printed in a local shopping guide, Davidson endorsed Barnhart, who is an independent running on the Democratic Party line, over Mark Benjamin, who defeated Davidson in the Republican primary.

Barnhart is mayor of the village of Lodi.

Davidson and his wife, Mary, were injured in an August auto accident in West Virginia. He was treated at a hospital in Morgantown, W.Va., before moving recently to Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester for rehabilitation.

In thanking people for their well-wishes, kind words and generous support since the accident, Davidson said that has “lifted our hearts and lightened our load considerably.”

“I would have liked to end my time as Lodi town supervisor differently, but I trust the Town Board to carry out the responsibilities of our term as I would have done, by always speaking the truth and putting the good of Lodi at the forefront of every decision,” Davidson wrote. “In that spirit, I would like to endorse Kyle Barnhart as your next supervisor. Kyle has an impressive record of service at the town and village level, starting almost as soon as he became a Lodi resident.”

He said Barnhart has attended volunteer and social events and Town Board meetings regularly and, in doing so, has gained an understanding of the challenge and joys inherent in small-town government.

“This is not a question of political party, but one of respect for the process and people’s willingness to listen to all sides of an issue before taking an informed position that benefits the town of Lodi and the people,” he said.

He thanked town voters for the opportunity to serve as supervisor for 12 years, calling it “an honor and privilege to serve the community for the past 12 years.”

“I look forward to rejoining you in Lodi soon,” Davidson concluded.

Barnhart, on his campaign Facebook page, said, “I was humbled and honored to see Supervisor Davidson’s endorsement printed in this week’s shopper. I’ve enjoyed working with Mr. Davidson so much over the past few years and wish him nothing but the best in his recovery.”

Benjamin didn’t address the endorsement directly.

“If elected town supervisor, I will work every day to protect our values, reduce taxes, cut spending and improve our roads,” Benjamin said.

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