Editor, The Commercial:
Love him or hate him, Mayor Redus is only doing what any and all politicians work to do! And that is give himself an advantage over any potential opponents for his job. Is it fair? Yes, if the law allows it.
The issue that many are trying to assign his chicanery to is a state law that deals with cities with populations that fall below 50,000. And based on The Commercial’s editorial (9/8/12) and mayoral candidate Hollingsworth’s assertions this statute would make the mayoral election be held in the midterm elections of 2014, rather than 2012. The very first point is the local election commission should have been on this issue from the time of the 2010 census conclusion.
You can contend that the mayor is motivated by desire to be eligible for a pension after 10 years of city service (whereas, presently he has eight), and that it may be less likely that he would get the chance for this pension as a result of the 2012 election. This may be the case. But, I find this to not be as disturbing as the many past mayors that Pine Bluff pays pensions to, that were here when the city started to decline and maintained it long before Redus’ term.
The final point is whether Redus has done anything toward the uplift of Pine Bluff to deserve a pension. Here again, I say the others didn’t really do anything to warrant a pension, so wouldn’t you expect him to fight tooth and nail to secure his? And as for the citizens deserving to choose a mayor — they will still choose the next mayor; it just may be two years later than 2012!