Mayor Kevin Eltife walked into the doors of City Hall Wednesday morning like it was just any other day. "I don't like to prepare for this stuff, because then I have to think about the fact that I'm actually leaving."
After six years as Mayor, and five as a City Council Member, term limits have caught up with Eltife. This, his last City Council Meeting, was full of goodbyes.
"You know, what I'm really going to miss are the city employees... I won't miss the people that call me when the cable goes out. "
Eltife is not spending his last days in office reflecting on his legacy. But he knows the changes in Tyler he started are now spreading to other areas. "If you don't think we've done a good job, look at what's happened in some of these political races around here. People want change. They want people to do what the City of Tyler City Government has done."
He says being a good mayor has made him a better person. "When you go through an annexation hearing where 250 people are lined up to call you a thief, and you treat them with respect. And then two or three years later, they come up to you and say, you know, y'all have done a great job for us, we appreciate the way you've handled it. That makes you a better person."
He lowered taxes, built parks, improved streets, but most of all, made a long line of friends.