Tallassee mayor out after 20 years

Mayor-Elect George McCain
Mayor-Elect George McCain
Incumbent Bobby Payne
Incumbent Bobby Payne

By Mark Bullock - Email

TALLASSEE, AL (WSFA) - It's the end of an era in Tallassee. Chamber of Commerce Director George McCain defeated long-time mayor Bobby Payne in Tuesday's municipal election. It closes out Payne's 32-year political career.

The song played at McCain's victory celebration was, "Happy Days are Here Again."

"I'm just so overwhelmed, I can't think right now," McCain told WSFA 12 News in an interview.

But Mayor Payne considers his 20-year stint as mayor pretty happy, too.

"Especially the last four years," Payne said. "We got a lot of jobs, new jobs, with Hyundai and Kia suppliers."

In separate interviews, both candidates congratulated the other on well-run campaigns. Now it's McCain's turn to continue the city's economic growth.

"We want to try to get more population growth in our city to get more retail sales tax," McCain said. He suggested a larger retailer like Wal-Mart could help boost revenue as it has in other Elmore County towns.

When asked why he beat an incumbent with such a long history in office, McCain responded, "It could be anybody in this country. After they've been in office for twenty years, there's a sentiment of change."

Tallassee also voted for change on its city council. In the five races up for grabs, only one incumbent was able to claim victory.