41NBC's Coreen Savitski interviews current Mayor Robert Reichert. He's in to tell us why he should continue what he started. Election Day is July 19th.
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Flanked with numerous local pastors, clergy, and elders from churches of various denominations, mayoral candidate C. Jack Ellis (D), received support for his candidacy.
Ellis said the city must have a strong relationship with local churches, and looks forward to having a faith based community, if elected. Ellis said the city is obligated to support churches, because they are already in the community, helping to make those communities better.
Ellis proposed that churches help the city, by continuing programs like after school care, open gyms, and classroom help. Ellis said that since many churches already have many of those options for kids, there is less need to spend as much on things like city parks and recreation.
Ellis also wants to regulate where liquor stores and pawn shops are located, so they are not in the same neighborhoods as churches.
Ellis Addresses Question of Personal Beliefs
During the conference, Ellis publically announced he is a member of the Baptist Church denomination. While holding the office of mayor, Ellis converted to the Islam faith, and faced many questions and concerns from the public.
After directly asking Ellis if he was a member of the Christian Baptist faith, or the Islamic faith, he responded,
"I'm a Baptist. And I'm a proud one. And this is my pastor. And I'm very proud to have him as my pastor. I have a great deal of respect for all the great religions of the world. I've even studied two or three of them. I went to Vietnam, stayed with the Buddhist monks for some time. So I've studied all the great religions. I'm a Christian. I was born a Christian, I will die a Christian."
When asked a similar question in an interview earlier in the week with 41 NBC, Ellis had said he didn't think his faith should matter when people go to vote, and people shouldn't be bigots when they go to vote.
Standing in front of the Douglas Theatre downtown, Robert Brown laid out a portion of his plan on how he wants Macon to be perceived.
Brown, one of four democrats in the mayoral race, said he sees the city free of violent criminals. He also wants to have modernized infastructures, and get the citizens more involved in different aspects of downtown.
Brown used the backdrop of the theatre, because he wants the Martin Luther King corridor, to be the "Gateway to Macon".
He proposed one idea of how to clean up the city, and keep it maintained, is by using the surrounding college and university students to do work. According to Brown, the students would be volunteers for the projects, but they would be able to use the experience towards their field of study.
Another plan of Browns, is to initiate a group he calls the "Young Ambassadors for Macon Music." Brown said the group would be a choir or quartet that would travel the country to raise money and awareness for the city. Brown said this would not be another tax payer supported entity. The group would be self-sufficient.
Brown also said the city has too much music history that cannot be lost. More people need to be aware of what has happened in Macon, and those who have come from Macon.
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