By NATHAN GREGORY
Four of the Starkville Board of Aldermen’s seven current members have either already qualified or announced plans to qualify for another term in this year’s municipal election, while Mayor Parker Wiseman has announced his intention to run for a second term and will have at least one opponent.
Qualifying for the election, which will be held June 4, began Jan. 2. The deadline to qualify is March 8 at 5 p.m.
Primaries will take place May 7. A runoff, if necessary, will be held May 21.
Wiseman will announce his plans to seek re-election noon Monday at Starkville Community Market. Local businessman Dan Moreland announced his qualification to run as a Republican for mayor on Jan. 2. No other candidates for mayor have qualified.
Ward 1 Alderman Ben Carver and Ward 7 Alderman Henry Vaughn have already qualified to run for second terms.
Ward 2 Alderman Sandra Sistrunk and Ward 6 Alderman Roy A. Perkins have made public their intention to run again but have not yet qualified. Both have said they will do so in the near future and will make official announcements when they officially qualify.
Ward 3 Alderman Eric Parker said he will announce his intentions this week.
It is guaranteed that the board will have at least two new members when it takes office in July. Two-term Ward 4 Alderman Richard Corey announced he will not run for a third. Ward 5 Alderman Jeremiah Dumas said he will not run for a second term on the board.
Local businessman David Little qualified to run for the seat of Ward 3 Alderman as a Republican Jan. 7, while Mississippi State University Career Center Director Scott Maynard announced the next day he qualified to run in Ward 5 as a Republican.
Wiseman said he will officially qualify after his address Monday.
“I am excited about the progress that we’ve made over the past four years and I am even more excited about the progress I think we can make over the next four years,” he said. “I look forward to laying out my vision for the future on Monday.”
Carver said he’s pleased with some action the current board has taken during its term, but the need for more to be done was encouragement for him to run again.
“I’ve enjoyed the opportunity getting a first term’s worth of knowledge and experience. I think this board did tackle some big issues (such as) capital improvement issues and basic maintenance needs of the city. I think there’s a lot of work to be done and that’s why I’m running for a second term — to stay involved with that process,” he said. “We need to be able to concentrate on funding mechanisms for capital improvements and street overlays. We’ve got to figure out a way to fund another significant round. I think we’re due in the next couple of years for some kind of bonding issue or something to figure out a way to get some significant mileage covered in the street overlay program.”
Sistrunk said she will qualify within the week and hopes to use what she learned in her first term as alderman and vice mayor to be a better city representative if she is re-elected.
“It’s been an honor and a privilege to serve. I’ve learned a lot about the community and myself over the last three-and-a-half years. I think given that experience, I can be a more effective alderman and a second term,” she said. “There’s a lot of work still to be done and I can make a meaningful contribution.”
Perkins said he looks forward to running for a sixth consecutive term in Ward 6 and will make a formal announcement shortly after he qualifies.
“I would like to thank the constituents and taxpayers for their support over the past 20 years,” Perkins said. “It is my intention to qualify for alderman of Ward 6 for a sixth time.”
Calls to Vaughn went unreturned as of press time.