TOP STORY >> Cabot council will see major change
Leader staff writer
Cabot Alderman Jerry Stephens announced this week that he will not seek a second term on the city council.
“It’s going to be a new look in city government,” Stephens said of the many open seats this election year. “There will be a new council and a new mayor and I think in some ways that might be a good thing.”
Including Stephens’ Ward 2, Position 2 seat, five positions on the council will be open if everyone who has announced actually runs for another office. The aldermen with the most experience will be gone.
Bob Duke, Ward 3, Position 2, is retiring after 30 years. James Glenn, Ward 4, Position 2, with 20 years of experience, has announced as an independent candidate for mayor. So has David Polantz, Ward 1, Position 1, with 10 years of council experience.
Patrick Hutton, Ward 2, Posi-tion 1, in his second, two-year term on the council, is running for the Lonoke County Quorum Court.
And Mayor Stubby Stumbaugh, in the last year of his first four-year-term, is the Republican candidate for Congress in the First District.
Former Alderman Eddie Joe Williams and former Lonoke County JP Bill “Pete” Pedersen have filed for the mayor’s race as Republicans. Former JP Kenny Ridgeway has announced as an independent.
Although he would not talk about the specifics of his decision to not run again, Stephens said it was not because former City Attorney Ken Williams has filed for his seat. In fact, he didn’t know Williams was running until after he decided he wasn’t, Stephens said.
He describes his term on the council as an honor.
“I decided to not run again after a lot of prayer and thoughtful consideration,” he said. “I want to thank the people of Cabot who elected me and allowed me to serve them. I hope in some small way, I’ve made a difference.
“I enjoyed working with the other members of the council. Although we didn’t always agree, I thought we disagreed graciously,” he said.
None of the remaining three council members have said they won’t run again: Eddie Cook, Ward 1, Position 2, in his first term: Odis Waymack, Ward 4, Position 1, in his third term: and Tom Arm-strong, Ward 3, Position 1, in his second term.
Most candidates in Cabot are independents who must file for office from noon July 20 until noon August 9.