Lee prepared to take over as mayor of North Las Vegas
NORTH LAS VEGAS, NV (FOX5) -
A new mayor has been elected in North Las Vegas. John Lee won Tuesday's primary, securing more than half the vote. That's enough to claim a victory without a general election.
"We went from a euphoria - we won - to now we got to get to work," said Mayor-elect John Lee.
Lee said he wasn't expecting to win the whole race in the primary election, but voters in North Las Vegas made that decision.
Lee, a former state senator, won with 53 percent to incumbent Mayor Shari Buck's 35 percent.
"It's not real promising here," said North Las Vegas resident Dellois Harry, who is skeptical of any major rejuvenation, especially in a city just recently so far in debt that it declared a state of emergency.
"The city council or whoever, they need to do some coming together," he said.
"Change is good. So maybe he can do something better (than) the first mayor did," said resident Loetta Spikes who, admittedly, was one of the few who cast a vote Tuesday.
Only 10.44 percent of registered North Las Vegas voters made it to the polls. Spikes said she was disappointed in her fellow residents. Lee felt the same way.
"Maybe I'll blame myself for not reaching out to enough people," he said. "For the campaign coming after the presidential campaign - for the legislature being in session - I think people went through a period of time of ‘Does this ever stop?'"
At Wednesday's city council meeting, it was business as usual. During the campaign, Buck stressed the city had turned the corner into better days.
Lee says there's a lot of work to be done.
Most importantly, he says he wants to develop more land, and make North Las Vegas a home for more businesses.
Still, he knows it's a challenge.
"I understand that we have a responsibility to pay our bills. We have a responsibility to pay our debts. We have to look at the situation - the cash flow we do have," Lee said.
Leonard Cardinale, president of the North Las Vegas Police Supervisors Association, told FOX5 it is happy with the decision and hopeful Lee will add more police officers to city streets. The union had endorsed Lee during the campaign.
"The relationship (with the city) has been a little contentious, but we're not focusing on the negative. We're focusing on the positive and moving forward," Cardinale said.
Lee spoke with the North Las Vegas city manager Wednesday to begin transitioning to the office he will occupy starting July 1.
As of late Wednesday afternoon, Lee says he has yet to receive a concession call from Buck.
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