7 candidates face off in Opp mayoral race

Published: Aug. 17, 2016 at 9:55 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 17, 2016 at 10:51 PM CDT
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Opp, AL (WSFA) - When Opp residents head to the polls on Aug 27, seven candidates will be on the ballot for mayor.

Incumbent John Bartholomew believes his work isn't finished yet in the mayor's office and wants to continue another four years.

"Our goal is to continue to do our infrastructure, bringing businesses in, and creating jobs," says Bartholomew. "That's morally what we are looking for. We have created those jobs; as a matter of fact, we've got 200 jobs we are hoping to fill now and we've got more jobs behind that."

Becky Bracke says unity is what's needed to make a difference in the city.

"We've had a lot of division in Opp and I want to bring it together and I'm thinking I'm the leader that can. I think I can bring a positive and productive relationship with everybody," said Bracke.

For Deborah Dean, economic development is imperative.

"We need to recruit some retail for the bypass because I think once you actually get a business in out there, then I think it will attract other businesses," explained Dean. "The sales tax revenue is what's going to help get the city to be able to provide new services for its citizens. We need to try to recruit jobs, we need industry. That's my goals is to try to do that."

Current City Councilman T.D. Morgan says the main focus should be on Opp's next generation.

"My main goal is our kids. I want to see our kids have the best education that they can have," says Morgan.

Haywood Nawlin wants to help current residents in order to bring more people to the city of opportunity.

"We want to make it to where the outsiders can see that they've got something here that they might want to come in and be a part of us," said Nawlin.

Mackey Watley wants to see a change and believes saving money creatively will help the city.

"Consolidate the garbage from the spot," said Watley. "Tin, aluminum, and glass; all that's recyclable. A lot of people throw it away, but you can use it [the glass] in concrete. Recycle it all and you won't have any garbage."

Wayne Wood says jobs are essential in making Opp thrive and he believes he can do some things differently to help the city.

"Over the past 25 years, I've looked at things and how things have transpired over time and I think there's an opportunity out there for us to make some changes and do some things differently that will make us better," said Wood. "We keep talking about jobs and we haven't seen anything blossom to any significant extent in the past couple of years. My main focus would be getting jobs in here."

Opp residents will also vote for city council members on Aug 23. If needed, a run-off will be held on Oct 4.

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