Council hopes interim mayor will carry on legacy - News, Weather & Sports

Council hopes interim mayor will carry on legacy

Ron Thomas Ron Thomas
Edna Berger Edna Berger
Bill Bennett Bill Bennett
Tony Bishop Tony Bishop
Elizabethtown Mayor Tim Walker (Source: City of Elizabethtown) Elizabethtown Mayor Tim Walker (Source: City of Elizabethtown)

ELIZABETHTOWN, KY (WAVE) - It may look like any other town square, but in the past couple years its face has changed. "You'll see new sidewalks throughout, new street lights throughout, you'll see some buildings renovated," explained Councilman Ron Thomas.

Thomas said a lot of the changes are thanks to former Mayor Tim Walker. Walker made redeveloping downtown a pet project when he took office in 2011. "Tim was just a remarkable individual. He literally and figuratively gave his heart to the city. He died of a heart attack."

[PREVIOUS STORY: Elizabethtown mayor laid to rest]

It wasn't just the downtown project Walker left behind. "We're paving more roads than we ever have before. There's a possibility of new industry coming in. He had a forthcoming trip to Japan that he was going to go on to our sister city," explained Thomas. "There's a lot on the table. There's a lot happening in Elizabethtown."

Those projects along with the downtown redevelopment leave a big decision  for the city council. By law the council has 30 days to pick someone to fill Walker's spot. With less than two weeks left, three council members want the job including Edna Berger, Bill Bennett and Tony Bishop. "Any one of the three can do the job. They have different backgrounds and different motivations," said Thomas.

[PREVIOUS STORY: City remembers late mayor for kind heart]

Ultimately, though, the council wants someone who will carry on Mayor Walker's blueprint, "Not to initiate a new project or institute new programs, but just to carry on what has been started," said Thomas.

Resident John Thompsett hopes that will happen too. He moved his hat shop Hataritaville from his home into a downtown shop two months ago and was impressed with the mayor's work building their downtown. "He was doing all the research he could including going up to Indiana and down around Franklin, Tennessee to see what the little towns were doing and how we could get this kick started," said Thompsett.

[PREVIOUS STORY: Elizabethtown Mayor Tim Walker dies at 54]

His only complaint, while he's seen the changes, he wants more. "For me personally, it would be a little more progression, a little more aggressive development."

He hopes it an option for downtown and the city with whomever takes Tim Walker's place.

Councilman Thomas said they hope to select the person during a special meeting Monday. Whoever it is will serve through the end of Walker's term in November 2014.

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