Mayor, 2 alderman seats up for grabs in Monticello

Published 5:00 am Monday, June 4, 2001

MONTICELLO — In the first election since the entire town boardand mayor were replaced in 1997, voters will decide Tuesday whetherthe mayor and two ward candidates can retain their post.

Races in Wards 1, 3 and 4 are over as no challengers arose toface incumbents Jerry Goode, George Magee and Dick Reeves,respectively.

In other races, incumbent Mayor David Nichols is challenged byProdous G. May. Incumbent Ed Melzer will face Steve Moreman in Ward2, and incumbent Pete Mathews is challenged by Ricky Sykes in Ward5.

Four of the six candidates addressed questions during acommunity forum sponsored by the Lawrence County Chamber ofCommerce May 29 at the Lawrence County Civic Center.

Mathews and Sykes, both Ward 5 candidates, did not attend.

During the forum, Nichols cited lower water bills, efforts tohold the line on garbage bills, $1.1 million the city has securedin various project grants and 17 streets either paved by the cityor in conjunction with the board of supervisors as his majoraccomplishments.

May provided the sparks for the night’s forum with hisquestioning of Nichols’ accomplishments. He questioned the mayor’suse of city funds and the number of paved streets. He also said hewould create a way to give more financial scrutiny to the people sothey would be more aware of where their tax dollars go.

In contrast to the mayor’s race, Melzer and Moreman ended theforum publicly wishing their opponent good luck.

“If I lose, I couldn’t lose to a better man than Steve,” Melzersaid. “But I don’t want to lose. I want to be your alderman.”

Melzer said much of the progress the city has made in the lastfour years was because of the cooperation among the mayor and boardof alderman. He said he would run on his record.

Moreman said he held no complaints about the way the city wasbeing run, but he wanted to represent the people of his ward.

“Monticello has been real good for me, and this is one way forme to give something back to Monticello,” he said.

Monticello has an open party election system, so candidates arenot required to disclose their party affiliation.