Little Rock Mayor Frank Scott Jr. files for reelection
Little Rock Mayor Frank Scott has formally filed to run for reelection. On Monday, he turned in the necessary paperwork to the city clerk's office in City Hall.
Scott has served as mayor since 2018 and is seeking a second term. Scott said he has learned that preparation is an important part of the office.
“Always expect the unexpected. Every mayor in America was elected during my tenure and didn't expect a global pandemic and all that comes with it. No one expected a historic snowstorm or historic floods in Little Rock, Arkansas. No one expected the summer of George Floyd that reminds us of the summer of the 1960s,” Scott told reporters.
In the past two weeks, two candidates have filed to challenge Scott – car dealership owner Steve Landers and small business owner and real estate consultant Greg Henderson.
Landers is focusing much of his campaign on the rise in crime over the last couple of years. Scott said he doesn’t believe crime will be the key issue of this election.
“I think the issue that’ll define this race is whether residents want to see their city continue going forward and whether they want to ensure our city reaches its full potential. We are embarking to ensure Little Rock is a catalyst for the new South,” Scott said.
When asked about what his administration is doing about crime, Scott said $8 million has been invested in programs aimed at addressing crime through prevention, intervention and community programs.
Currently, the city is looking for a new police chief. Scott said about 20 to 30 applicants have applied for the position. The mayor said he expects the city will fill the position before the November election.
Landers said whoever the mayor is should fill the position. Henderson said the process and not the timeline should be the priority of the search.
“I believe it shouldn't be a matter of trying to hurry up and fill it before the election nor should it be intentionally holding off until the election to fill it. What should be the priority is working with the community, city board, and LRPD to make sure we select someone with the leadership skills needed to bring unity within those three stakeholders," Henderson said in an email. "The lack of unity is what ultimately hurt Chief Humphrey and I believe that has to be priority whenever we decide to hire a new chief."
With two days left before the filing period ends, Scott, Landers and Henderson are the only candidates to have filed to run for mayor. The election will be held in November and a runoff will be held in December if no candidate gets at least 40% of the vote.