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Mayor Jay Dean draws challenger

By Angela Ward award@news-journal.com
March 5, 2012 at 11 p.m.


The Longview mayoral election became a race on Monday, with Tammy Barnes filing to run against incumbent mayor Jay Dean.

Monday was the last day of filing.

Barnes, 41, is a customer service attendant. She returned to Longview in June, but has lived in the city previously.

"I've never held an elected position before, so I'm definitely diving into the deep end by running for mayor," Barnes said.

Barnes said that, if elected, she will focus on creating jobs within the city and providing more cultural activities and recreational opportunities for youth.

Dean, 56, is a local business owner. Because of local term limit laws, this would be his final term if he is re-elected in May.

"I welcome the opportunity to have a challenger," Dean said. "It won't change anything about my campaign."

Dean has said his goals are to continue working with the City Council to enhance the quality of life in Longview; to focus on the city's future with goals set forth in Vision 2015; to continue spending only what the city takes in; and to push through a "difficult" economic time.

The only other contested election is for District 1. Incumbent John Sims, 77, will face two challengers: Samantha D. Clark, 63, and David J. Sparks, 49.

Sims is retired. Clark is the associate pastor of Triumphant Christian Center. Sparks is a construction contractor.

Should Sims win, it would be his third and final term.

Gary L. Smith, 53, is essentially the councilman-elect for District 2. Darryl Williams, the incumbent, is not eligible to run again because this is his third and final term and Smith is the only person who has filed to run for the position.

City elections are May 12.

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