Time to get to work for the people of Natchez

Published 3:32 pm Sunday, April 14, 2024

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This week our city held municipal elections which, despite a final election still to take place in June, effectively set the stage for what will likely constitute our city’s leadership for the next four years.

The mayor, judge, and three alderman races were unopposed. And three alderman races that were opposed were decided in favor of the incumbents. As a result, with only one alderman race facing opposition in June (that likely will be of little consequence), it appears that the current slate of city leaders will continue to serve for another four years. Looking at what we’ve been able to accomplish during the past four years, I am encouraged that this means a continuation of progress, meaning that our Natchez Renewal will continue rolling forward, gaining even more momentum for even greater things to come!

I want to take a moment to congratulate every alderman and our city judge on their soon to be affirmed reelection. And I want to thank you, the people of Natchez, for the confidence you have placed in me as your mayor, allowing me to run unopposed for another four years. I am humbled. I am grateful. And I am excited!

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It has been said that our country has been overrun with politicians who put themselves first and the people last. I pray that the opposite will be said of us — that we put the citizens of Natchez first, and ourselves last.  We are public servants after all.

Too often in today’s culture, people in politics are more focused on winning than doing the right thing. And often, they argue just to argue, and in the end, the people lose. I believe this is the reason we see such apathy and cynicism in our country today, and watching the news, and witnessing the actions of those who are supposed to be our leaders, I can’t say that I fault the American people for losing faith in their government.

I am grateful that things seem to be different in Natchez. And if I’ve learned anything over the past four years, it is this: we can accomplish more together than we can apart. And while we aren’t always going to agree, and in fact sometimes we will disagree, we don’t have to be disagreeable.

Early on the morning of Election Day I said this prayer: that God would continue to bless our city as He guided those voting to vote for individuals who are kind, honest, and motivated to do the best for our city and for our citizens, putting aside political agendas based upon argument and division, and working together for the greater good.

We have by His grace made tremendous progress over the past four years, despite some who opposed progress at every turn.

My prayer now is that the next four years will be truly great – that our city will work as a team, moving forward in a way that sets the standard for other cities to follow. We have accomplished much yes. But there is so much more to be done.

Now is the time to roll up our sleeves and get the work done. I for one can’t wait! Because Natchez Deserves More.

Dan M. Gibson is mayor of Natchez.