City Council incumbents Lavonta Williams, James Clendenin and Janet Miller will seek new four-year terms in April’s city election.
All three — Williams in District 1, Clendenin in District 3, and Miller, the vice mayor, in District 6 — have yet to file. They all said Wednesday that they will seek re-election.
In addition, Wichita real estate agent Jeff Blubaugh has filed to fill the remaining two years of Michael O’Donnell’s unexpired term in southwest District 4. O’Donnell won the District 25 Kansas Senate seat in November.
Candidates have until noon Jan. 22 to file for city and school offices. As of Wednesday afternoon, Clinton Coen had filed to run against Clendenin and Marty Mork had filed to run against Miller.
Miller said unfinished business drives her decision to seek another term in District 6, which includes central-northwest Wichita.
“I think the city has made a great deal of progress in the last four years,” she said. “I believe we’ve accomplished a lot. But although we’ve made a lot of progress, there is lots of work left to be done. I want to bring the skills and experiences I have to the projects and challenges we face in the next four years.”
Clendenin, who is completing the final two years of Jim Skelton’s unexpired term, said he’s ready to move on past Skelton’s projects to some of his own in District 3, which covers south and southeast Wichita.
“We’re moving forward toward some bigger and some smaller projects,” he said. “The big picture projects are ensuring that the Southfork development moves forward, a southeast library branch, river bank improvements, fighting blight and maintaining the increase funding we’ve approved for street improvements.”
Clendenin said he also wants to continue working with local businesses on jobs. He will also bring residents and city government together more often, he said, such as the tours he’s organized at the controversial — and often smelly — city sewer plant to show planned improvements to make it more acceptable to district residents.
Williams said she’s running “because there’s so much more work to be done,” for her district and for the city in general. District 1 includes downtown and central-northeast Wichita.
She plans to continue her grass-roots style, spending as much time in the community as possible.
“You redistrict and you begin to meet people, socialize, talk about their needs,” Williams said.
Mayor Carl Brewer said continuity will be important as the council continues its work.
“Familiarity with city issues,” he said. “Meeting with their constituents on a regular basis. Working every weekend. Being there to hear what the concerns are.”