Incumbents all in for May municipal election

Incumbents all in for May municipal election

On Monday, Brentwood City Commissioner Rhea Little turned in his qualifying petition to run in the May 2 municipal election.

That makes him the third of three incumbent commissioners to file for reelection, as Mayor Regina Smithson and Commissioner Mark Gorman had already done so.

“The neat thing about election season is getting out to see all the citizens and talk to them and hearing their interests and concerns,” Little said. “I am looking forward to the election process.”

The three seats held by the incumbents represent the only ones up for grabs on election day in Brentwood. What might have been a sleepy, non-competitive race received a jolt, however, last week when, as the Brentwood Home Page reported, local businessman John Byers picked up a qualifying petition from the Williamson County Election Commission.

At the time, Byers said he was strongly considering a run, but had not definitively made up his mind on whether to enter the race or not. Reached for comment on Monday, Byers still would not say 100 percent that he was running, but signaled he was leaning that way.

“I think I will have a definitive decision in the next couple of days,” Byers said. “I am getting signatures, and I’m pretty close to being all in.”

If Byers does choose to run that means that either he or one of the incumbents will find themselves without a seat on the Board of Commissioners after election day.

Mayor Regina Smithson has been on the Brentwood Board of Commissioners since 1989 and is currently serving her second term as mayor. Commissioner Rhea Little was first elected to the board in 2009, while Commissioner Mark Gorman was elected in 2013.

In Brentwood, all seven members of the Board of Commissioners are elected to four-year terms, and mayors and vice mayors are appointed by fellow commissioners to two-year terms.

In the 2013 election, there were six candidates for the same three seats up for election this year. Gorman received the most votes of any of the candidates, while Smithson and Little came in second and third respectively. Incumbent Mayor Paul Webb was unseated.

Anyone else looking to run in the May 2 election has until Thursday, Feb. 16 at noon to turn in their qualifying petitions.

The voting registration deadline for the upcoming election is Monday, April 3. Early voting will run from Wednesday, April 12 through Thursday, April 27.

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