The Ottumwa Courier

Ottumwa

June 17, 2013

Changes coming to council chambers

OTTUMWA — Four city officials are up for re-election this fall, though only two plan on running.

Mayor Frank Flanders, as well as Councilmen Bob Meyers, Brian Morgan and Jeremy Weller, will finish out their terms at the end of this year.

"Things are looking highly likely that I will [seek re-election]," Flanders said. "I think that we need some continuity of the good things that have been going on in the past few months. The only thing that would prevent me from seeking re-election is if my supporters were to draft me to seek another office."

Flanders will have some competition in Tom Lazio, who announced on Monday his plans to run for mayor.

Lazio said Ottumwa needs a leader who exhibits professionalism to promote the city and provide a positive business climate. Lazio, who served as the executive director of American Home Finding for 45 years, retired last year and said he now has the time to devote to the position.

"I don't know Mr. Lazio all that well, other than having worked with him a little bit with the [Ottumwa Regional] Legacy Foundation," Flanders said. "We'll see what kind of a platform he comes up with."

Flanders said he's proud of his first term as mayor.

"One thing I'm really proud of both as mayor and as a council person before is when people come before the council looking for redress, looking for someone to listen to them sympathetically, I've been there," he said. "I know that there are many citizens out there that have come to recognize that in me and appreciate it. For that reason and for others, I think I stand a chance of being able to improve my numbers in precincts where in the past I've struggled, assuming I do run again."

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