PHENIX CITY, AL (WTVM) - The election is months away but already the seat for council at large in Phenix City has a few hopeful occupants, and it turns out the two opponents running in the upcoming election are actually good friends.
Jimmy Wetzel is wrapping up his term as councilman at large for Phenix City, and already he is planning to serve once again. He told News Leader 9, "The council that is in office now has set the tone for growth and progress and improving the quality of life in Phenix City. There are those who would have Phenix City return to the stagnant years of the past and I believe that's what the citizens of Phenix City are going to be deciding this election."
And now Wetzel has at least one opposing candidate in the race Johnny Barfield.
Barfield said, "The Phenix City citizens deserve an honest, hard working council and government overall. I don't think they should be arguing among themselves. I think if that can be stopped the council can get back to being productive and doing positive things for the citizens of Phenix City."
The two men may be preparing to go head to head, but they don't see themselves as enemies.
Wetzel explained, "Johnny Barfield is one of my neighbors. We've been friends for a lot of years. He went to school with my wife. I was instrumental in having him put on the planning commission six or eight months ago. In our younger years we used to party together a lot."
Barfield added, "I don't consider it that much of a contest, it's just getting out there and seeing whose ideas people like best."
There is still time for candidates to qualify for the Phenix City council race, paperwork isn't due until July 17.