New Mayor Gives Roadmap For City - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Longview - 6/02/03

New Mayor Gives Roadmap For City

   For the past month, a new mayor of Longview has been at the head of the city.

   Murray Moore surprised many by beating incumbent Earl Roberts by 63 percent.

   Murray Moore is not your typical politician. Upon becoming mayor, he refused to move into the designated mayor's office, instead leaving it for other city officials. "The office that has been used in the past I gave to other council members," says Moore.

   That attitude may be why he took many by surprise that Saturday in May when he unseated then Mayor, Earl Roberts.

   But with the victory party over Mayor Moore went right to work. His latest issue to tackle is expense accounts for city council members. The mayor is proposing an auditor randomly survey their expenses. He says there is not a clear policy on how much to spend and on what. But he plans to change that.

   "There was a time that the way we're going it would've worked, but not now, I mean money's tough and I think if we tackle this issue, it'll set a good example with the community," says the mayor.

   Just last Friday, the mayor and other city officials met with the new owners of the Stroh's land, where the soccer fields are currently located. Moore says the owners are asking for too much money, so they passed on purchasing the land.

   "We felt like there was too big a spread of what we're willing to pay and what the owners of the land are wanting."

   The mayor says he and council members are committed to finding a place for kids to play.

   The issue of the police department may be even more difficult to work through. Officers have been critical of police chief A.J. Key, even calling for his resignation. For now, the mayor says that issue is up to the City Manager.

   "He's been made aware of the problems and I have confidence that he's addressing them."

   But his biggest goal, says Mayor Moore, is to try and rebuild trust between the community and it's leaders.

   Amy Tatum, reporting.

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