Little Rock City Director Michael Keck distributed a statement today that he read at the City Board meeting. He won't be running for mayor, despite some speculation to the contrary. What's more, the St. Vincent executive won't be seeking re-election after 17 years on the Board. He'll be missed. He was a West Little Rock advocate, but not a parochial one. He's essentially a Republican, but not a reflexive one. There's never been a better vote counter on the Board.
In advance of the coming 2010 municipal elections, City Director Michael Keck read the following statement to announce his plans for the 2010 municipal campaign season at last night’s city board meeting.
“For the past nearly 17 years, it has been my privilege to serve on the city of Little Rock’s Board of Directors. I will always be grateful to the citizens of Ward Five for allowing me to have to the opportunity to serve.
During my time in office, I am proud to have served with fellow board members and a city staff that have truly changed the way our city government functions. Citizens of Little Rock know their local elected officials. They are aware of the issues faced by our city. And, they are not afraid to speak their mind. I do not feel this sense of connection with our citizens was present 17 years ago. I am grateful that the voters of our city approved the changes in the summer of 1993 that allowed me the opportunity to serve.
I have a great sense of accomplishment to have been a part of several boards that established and maintained the priorities of our city around public safety, economic development and improving our quality of life. Because of the priorities set, we have seen new levels of achievement with both our police and fire departments. We continue to see that our city is more stable than other municipalities across the country because of our diverse and growing economy. And yes, our quality of life is excellent in Little Rock because the arts, the parks and because of the opportunities to enjoy the outdoors that are available within and around our great city.
Yet, I feel that our greatest achievements in the nearly seventeen years that I have served are two fold. With the approval of the voters in December 1993, we were able to begin and later expand a series of initiatives that changed the path for young people in our city. With the funds provided we were able to implement a series of Prevention, Intervention and Treatment initiatives that dropped the juvenile crime rate to record lows. Secondly, I am equally as proud to have served on the city’s Board of Directors when the decision was made to designate park land for the Clinton Presidential Center and Library. Because of this decision, our city is now viewed differently around the country and around the world. We were right to make the decision initially and when the heat came, we were right to hold fast to our decision.
It has been an honor to serve and I have greatly enjoyed my public service. I never imagined that I would serve for the amount of time that I have. Yet, it is time for my service as a city board member to end. Today, I am announcing that I will not be a candidate for re-election to the city board of directors. Furthermore, to put an end to speculation, I will not be a candidate for any municipal office this year. I believe the city would benefit by new and fresh perspectives that can be provided by a new board member. I will continue to serve until the end of my term and will then continue to work for the betterment of Little Rock in a non elected capacity.
In conclusion, I would like to express my appreciation to my family. Their love, support and perspective are as valuable to me as water, food and air. They have graciously allowed me to be away from home and to focus on my responsibilities. In addition, I would like to thank those men and women with whom I currently serve and with whom I have served previously. Your commitment to this city, your integrity and your desire for a better Little Rock are exemplary and I have enjoyed serving with all of you.
May God continue to bless and extend his favor upon the city of Little Rock.”