Smiths Station first mayor says she won't seek re-election - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Smiths Station first mayor says she won't seek re-election

Smiths Station Mayor LaFaye Dellinger. (Source: City of Smiths Station website) Smiths Station Mayor LaFaye Dellinger. (Source: City of Smiths Station website)

SMITHS STATION, AL (WTVM) - In an open letter to the citizens of Smiths Station, current Mayor LaFaye Dellinger says she will not seek re-election, saying, "it is the right decision for both me and my family." 

Dellinger has been the first and only mayor of Smiths Station since it became an incorporated city. 

The letter, dated June 17, reads as follows: 

Citizens of Smiths Station and the surrounding community,

It has been truly an honor for me to serve as the Mayor of Smiths Station. From the time I and several others went door to door to Campaign to incorporate the city in 1999, to now seventeen years later, I have always worked with the best interests at heart of the city and the people that I care so much about. 

However, there comes a time when all things must come to an end. There is a part of me that wants to continue to be Mayor, and did fully intend to seek re-election.

However, after careful consideration with my family and spending time in prayer, I have come to the conclusion that I cannot adequately focus on my health and my family while also giving the city the necessary attention it deserves. Various circumstances regarding my health and my family have led me to a point where I must make a decision about what is most important to me, and that is my family.

So, while this decision was difficult, the answer was clear. As much as I love our community and being it’s Mayor, taking care of myself and, more importantly, spending time with my husband and life-partner, Rick, is my greatest priority. So, for this reason, I am choosing not to seek reelection for a fifth term as Mayor. I will continue to serve to the end of my present term which ends 11/4/2016.

It has been challenging along the way. There were times of uncertainty. There were moments of frustration and great triumph, and all in all, it was well worth it. In my time as Mayor, we are in our thirteenth consecutive year of population growth, we’ve seen the number of businesses operating within the city more than double over the past decade, we’ve been able to build a sports complex to host over three thousand annual participants, and we’ve been able to do it all without raising a property tax or taking on any significant debt for the city.

These are accomplishments I am proud to be part of, and I could not have done it without the help of countless people sacrificing their time and energy for the sake of the community. I would particularly like to thank the various City Council members and elected officials who have served our community, the different staff members who have made it their careers supporting our citizens, and, specifically, City Clerk Jerry Bentley, who has been with me since the very beginning. To all of those who committed themselves to making Smiths Station a better place, I am truly grateful.

This was a very difficult decision because of how much I care about the people of our community and how much more I believe we can accomplish together. But I believe in our citizens and I know that they will continue to strive to make Smiths Station a great place to call home.

I have lived a truly blessed life. I’ve been able to experience many things and enjoy many careers, but nothing I have ever done has been as rewarding and meaningful to me as being Mayor of this great city. I love its people and its community. I am thankful for its past and I am excited about its future. I am grateful to the Lord that He has given me an opportunity to play my part in the story of this community and it is by His grace that I was able to do so. 

Simply put, I love Smiths Station. And I always will. 

It has been an honor to be your Mayor and a privilege that I will always cherish. I am grateful for your support along the way. I couldn’t have done it without you. 

Thank you for a wonderful fifteen years. God bless you, and may God continue to bless Smiths Station.

Cordially,
LaFaye Dellinger

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