There has been a shake-up in the field of candidates seeking seats on the Peachtree City Council this November.
Vietnam veteran and retiree Michael L. “Mike” King has announced he will seek the Post 2 spot that is being vacated in mid-term by Councilman George Dienhart.
Dienhart is bowing out to make a run for mayor, thus whoever wins the Post 2 seat will serve the two years and a few days remaining in that term.
It also means whoever wins can take office right after the election is over instead of waiting until Jan. 1 like the remaining candidates for the three other seats up for grabs: the Mayor’s spot and the Post 3 and Post 4 seats.
Councilwoman Vanessa Fleisch is giving up her Post 4 seat to run for mayor and Councilwoman Kim Learnard is seeking re-election to her Post 3 spot.
The other three candidates in the mayor’s race so far are former Mayor Harold Logsdon, current Mayor Don Haddix and local businessman Ryan Jolly.
The only other announced candidate for a council seat is former Peachtree City Police Captain Terry Ernst, who has not specified which post he is seeking.
Though King is joining the fray, another candidate is bowing out. Resident Josh Bloom, in a letter this week, cited changes in his work situation as he will have to commute to Detroit for his position as a pilot for Pinnacle Airlines.
“I have come to the conclusion that I will not be able to dedicate the amount of time required,” Bloom said. “If I was elected, it would be unfair to the citizens of Peachtree City to have a councilman available only part-time.”
Bloom, who combined with a handful of other citizens to conduct a needs assessment of the city and analyze how citizens felt about property tax levels, said he hoped for diversity in the field of candidates who would “contribute a positive attitude, good ideas and lead our city to great things.”
King in his announcement said he pledged “to do my utmost to restore the dignity of the office and the thoughtful consideration of views opposite my own. In a democracy such as ours each of us has a voice, but we all must support the decisions of our institution.”
King said his main three goals are to change the election of council members to even numbered years to improve voter turnout; enact zero-based budgeting and establish a public safety director to oversee police and fire operations.
King ran for the Post 2 seat in 2007 but was defeated in a runoff election by Doug Sturbaum.