Editor’s note: Oak Ridge Mayor Warren Gooch is seeking a second two-year term. Here is a December 2 letter he wrote to the rest of the Oak Ridge City Council.
Dear City Council colleagues:
I am seeking re-election for a second term as mayor, and I respectfully ask for your support. Two years ago, I pledged to be a consensus builder and to work with each of you, the Board of Education, and the city staff to restore collegiality, team work, and shared goals for the future. I also committed to actively promote Oak Ridge and our commitment to excellence in our schools, city services, and quality of life. I believe we have made great strides in this regard, and Oak Ridgers have embraced our collective efforts.
Over the last two years, I have worked diligently to delegate responsibilities among the Council and to appoint every member to lead specific initiatives based upon each member’s personal interests and Council’s priorities. Our work has been successful, as evidenced by the development of Main Street Oak Ridge; the establishment of the Manhattan Project National Historical Park; re-development of Jackson Square; new retail, commercial, and industrial investment; the continued development and support of the Land Bank; the successful award of grants from the Tennessee Valley Authority and the Tennessee Housing Development Agency; the promotion of the Oak Ridge Corridor; the upgrade in our bond rating from AA to AA+; and the addition of the eighth lane to the Melton Lake rowing venue. I am particularly proud of the stronger relationships we have developed with our elected federal, state, and county officials; the Department of Energy; State of Tennessee; and our local Department of Energy contractors.
All of this has resulted in increased excitement about the momentum of our city. We must continue to work hard to maintain this momentum and take full advantage of it in the coming months. As you know, we have a number of near-term goals: the replacement of our 70-year-old water plant, a new pre-K building, and a long-awaited new Senior Center. Our longer term challenges include our stagnant population growth, attractive and affordable housing, the changing demographics of our city, and the loss of Hall Income Tax revenue. I want to help lead our efforts in addressing these issues, and that is why I am seeking re-election as mayor and asking for your vote.
I appreciate your service to our community, and I look forward to serving with each of you in the coming months. I am more confident than ever that great things will continue to happen in Oak Ridge every day.
Oak Ridge Mayor
Note: The submitted letters and columns published in the Opinion section do not necessarily reflect the views of Oak Ridge Today or its staff.
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