Sanders deserves some credit

Published: Wednesday, November 13, 2013 at 16:37 PM.

“I have an immense amount of respect for Jimmy, and I’ve said that the whole time,” Lewis said, saying during his campaign that he would offer a different, more aggressive style to dealing with city problems as mayor. “Jimmy’s done great things for the city. I believe that it is time for my style of leadership to be in charge of the city. I’m glad that I’ve won, but I greatly appreciate all that Jimmy has done for the city.”

Sanders’ fingerprints are all over Havelock. Among some of the things he has supported and pushed for over the years are the Havelock Tourist and Event Center, the recreation complex on Fontana Boulevard, the West End Fire Station, the 9/11 Memorial, the Havelock Senior Center, construction of the Walmart, and the sewer expansion project.

Sanders has also had a hand in some upcoming projects, such as the new city hall building and the Slocum Creek recreation park, both of which are in the planning stages and soon will be taking shape in Havelock.

Though no doubt some will argue about these projects and whether the costs were justified, Sanders’ intent was to improve this city for its residents, and a very sound argument could be made that these projects do just that.

So why such an overwhelming defeat? Simply put, the voters have the answer.

“The reason I voted was because I think we need a change,” voter Mark Wood said. “I think the present board is getting stagnant. The people in there need to go. We need fresher people.”

While Lewis is not necessarily a fresh face to city politics as a two-term commissioner, he is 36 years old, compared to the 66-year-old Sanders. And though incumbent Jim Stuart won a third term on the Havelock Board of Commissioners, newcomer Brenda Wilson got the most votes of any board candidate, and newcomer Peter Van Vliet finished just 29 votes behind Stuart in his first bid for public office.



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