Calera prepares to elect new city officials

CALERA, AL (WBRC) - Calera will have a new mayor and city council after tomorrow's voting completes. This comes more than a year after they were scheduled to take office.

Voters will head to the polls tomorrow to elect 6 council members because of a new plan approved by the U.S. Department of Justice. Last year's election results were rejected by the federal government.

Calera once had 5 districts that were divided geographically. But the new councilors will simply be the top 6 vote-getters citywide. The man elected mayor in the past election is assured victory again because he's the only candidate on the ballot.

But the city he inherits with voters concerns may be much different this year than in 2008.

"Everything, the city and the economy," said voter Dwight Brown. "And what do you hope to come out of these elections? Some good."

"I'm concerned about developing more business and I think that'll help," said business owner and voter Bobby Bowdown. "I don't know who will go in."

"What matters to me is the schools and for our safety here, more security with police," said voter Donna Singletary.

"I think that'll have in impact on our voter population tomorrow, said mayor-elect Jon Graham. "I think people are real concerned with where this city's headed and get some good leadership; people who can cooperate and work together."

Graham says the city needs to find new revenue sources and he believes whoever is elected to serve with him needs to focus on bringing more businesses to town.

City workers are now on a modified four 10-hour day working weeks to try and save money. Graham is ready to make his first promise as more layoffs of city workers.

"I think we can operate the way we are if the revenues continue to come in like they are," Graham said. "We should operate throughout the rest of this year ok, and hopefully in 2010-2011 we'll see more revenues."

Here's a list of the 9 candidates for the 6 council seats:

David Bradshaw

Chris Bunn

Jerry Davis

Ed Gentry

Ernest Montgomery

Bobby Joe Phillips

Mike Roberson

Eric Snyder

Alan Watts