Fourth, four-year term sought by Fort Smith Director Settle

by Michael Tilley ([email protected]) 575 views 

Fort Smith City Director Kevin Settle is seeking a fourth, four-year term to the Position 6, At-Large seat, saying he wants to continue the “progress of making our city great.” Director Settle is one of three board seats on the ballot in 2018.

The Position 5 and Position 7 At-Large seats, and city mayor also are up for election. The filing period begins May 16 and ends May 31.

Mayoral candidates must be qualified electors, must collect 50 valid signatures from registered voters, be 21 years old, and have been a city resident for at least six months. There also is a $10 filing fee. Candidate packets are available in the office of Fort Smith City Clerk Sherri Gard.

A primary election will be held Aug. 14 if more than two people enter the race. If no one emerges from the primary with more than 50% of the vote, the top two vote-getters will move on to the Nov. 6 general election.

Neal Martin is the only announced candidate for the position 7 at-large seat now held by Hutchings. Director Don Hutchings is not running for reelection. Martin ran unsuccessfully against Director George Catsavis in 2016 for the Ward 4 post. Catsavis won the general election with 55.9% of the vote.

Talk Business & Politics was unsuccessful in attempts to contact Director Tracy Pennartz, who holds the Position 5 seat, about her plans.

“I am excited to serve the citizens of Fort Smith over these past years. We have seen our city continue to grow and infrastructure investments continue to be made that will attract families, businesses and visitors to Fort Smith for many years to come,” Settle said in a statement. “I have served as your at-large city director for three terms and vice-mayor for two terms, and I feel that I am very well informed about the vision of our citizens of Fort Smith. I would like to continue to work with our citizens to continue our progress of making our city great and continue to provide experienced leadership as your city director. We have a wonderful city that I am glad to call home and I want to continue to lay the foundation for our city to grow, prosper and develop for the future.”

Settle, plant manager at Exide’s Fort Smith plant, also is a member of the executive committee of the Arkansas Municipal League, and is on the Western Arkansas Planning and Development District board.

Settle said “highlights” of his terms include growth in Chaffee Crossing; continued wet weather, drainage, and street improvements; new job recruitment and existing job retention; sewer and water plant treatment expansions; fire station upgrades, expansion and new equipment; comprehensive plan for the city; new aquatic facility; and city park improvements.

Settle and his wife, Terri, have two daughters, Katie and Rachel. He is a 1992 graduate of Southside High School, a 1994 graduate of Westark Community College and a 1996 graduate of the University of Arkansas Fayetteville, with a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering degree.