Knight plans to seek second term
Leada DeVaney, Hartselle Enquirer
Mayor Clif Knight said his decision to seek a second term is based on three reasons.
"First, I know how city government works and I have a good working relationship with department heads and employees," Knight said. "Second, I have no special interests or hidden agendas and I work hard to represent all citizens honestly, openly and fairly. Third, my Christian faith enables me to face the issues with a genuine concern and love for people and to make decisions for the public good based on the facts."
Knight is the second candidate for the city's top post. The only other candidate to announce intentions to run is Hartselle businessman Dwight Tankersley. Candidates have until July 20 to qualify for the Aug. 24 elections.
Knight said he is grateful to the council and the citizens of Hartselle for their encouragement and support.
"With their help, the city has been able to maintain a $4-million-plus balance in its general fund during a difficult economic period, received more than $2 million in grants and invested in capital improvement projects totaling more than $1.5 million," Knight said. "The 20-year comprehensive plan has been updated and a five-year capital improvement plan is in place for the first time since 1969."
The focus of his administration has and will be economic development.
"The initiative this administration has fostered and promoted to bring in new and expanded business needs to be continued with renewed focus and energy," he said. "Since we depend so heavily on sales tax dollars to operate the city, the addition of businesses to fill in market gaps and overall success of all business is directly proportional to the city's ability to provide services for its citizens. I can't emphasize enough how important it is for our two I-65 interchanges to develop commercially. Tax dollars generated from traffic on the interstate are icing on the cake since they require little or no return for city services."
Knight cites the agreement with the state to replace the Hammitt Street railroad bridge as one of the main accomplishments of his administration.
"I am extremely pleased that the city was able to negotiate an agreement with the Alabama Department of Transportation for 100 percent funding of the replacement of the old Hammitt Street railroad bridge in 2002. Design and engineering of this $1.5 million project is now under way with construction scheduled in 2005," Knight said. "The new bridge and connecting roadway not only will alleviate a serious safety concern, but will serve as the first link in a planned north downtown bypass linking Vaughn Bridge Road to I-65."
Other accomplishments cited by Knight include the completion of intersection improvements on Nanceford Road and East Main Street; the acquisition of a ladder truck for the fire department; construction of permanent offices and central shop for the Public Works Department; and the purchase of additional land for Sparkman Park.
Knight was elected mayor in September 2000, after working in the newspaper business for 39 years. He was editor and part owner of the Hartselle Enquirer for 31 years. An Air Force veteran and a graduate of The University of Alabama, Knight is a member of First Baptist Church in Hartselle and a 42-year city resident. He and his wife, Geanell, have three children and three grandchildren.