By Shane Nicholson
CITY HALL – Mayor Larry Morrissey announced Friday that he will not be seeking re-election in the April 2017 mayoral election.
The three-term mayor said that the time was right for him to exit city politics and move onto the next phase of his career.
“I’m very proud knowing I can leave office with the city on a strong trajectory for success,” the mayor said Friday in an interview.
“We’ve made a lot of progress in a lot of key areas and I feel like we’ve got a lot of the things done I set out to do 12 years ago.”
Morrissey, 46, says he doesn’t know what his next move is but that he plans on seeing out the rest of his term.
“I’m glad to hand the job off after the election and see someone else take advantage of the work we’ve done,” he said. “I love the job and I love the people I’ve been able to work with, but I feel like the timing is right for someone else to move into the job.”
The mayor says that despite rumors to the contrary he doesn’t have any plans on just what he wants to do after leaving office next year.
“I don’t want to go back to the same type of practice of law I did before I came into office,” he commented. “And there’s been a lot of talk about me having a job lined up already but that’s just not the case.”
Morrissey said that there were mixed emotions around his decision but that he feels the crop of candidates to replace him gives him hope for the city.
“There’s a mixture of sadness, but I feel very optimistic about the city’s future,” he said. “I’m not planning on endorsing any candidates right now, but I’ll be watching with interest as the campaigns unfold and that could change between now and the election.”
“I’m extremely proud of city’s accomplishments,” he added at Friday’s press conference at City Hall. “We’ve stayed true to our vision and have been fiscally responsible along the way.”
And the mayor, with his family beside him, offered gratitude to all the people who had helped him along the way.
“I’m deeply thankful to the many individuals who helped me get elected to three terms,” he said. “We still have crime, we still have poverty and we still have potholes, but we have progress.”