Middleton qualifies to run for mayor

Published 12:26 am Friday, March 7, 2008

NATCHEZ — Jake Middleton officially qualified to run for mayor Thursday afternoon, one day before the qualification deadline.

Middleton, a current alderman, said he waited so long on purpose.

“It’s just something that I’ve always done pretty much since I’ve been an elected official,” he said.

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He said he likes to see who he’ll be competing with first.

“That’s the way I plan my strategy,” Middleton said.

He’s been on the board of aldermen for 16 years and he said the timing is right for him to run for mayor.

“I have worked under four administrations and I think its time now for me to step up and hopefully the people of Natchez will give me the opportunity to lead the city,” he said.

“If given that opportunity, I think people will realize I can and am very capable of taking the city to the next level.”

Middleton said there are four specific things he would like to accomplish as mayor.

He wants to overlay St. Catherine, Franklin, Martin Luther King Jr. and Homochitto streets.

He’s worked with recreation for 13 years so he said it’s important for him to establish a recreational facility for the city and county.

He’d like to see city and county government consolidation and would like to increase the number of law enforcement officers and their salaries.

Middleton said if he hadn’t decided to run for mayor, he probably would have run for another term as alderman.

Phillip West and Charles “Chick” Graning have also qualified to run for mayor.