Baker holds off challengers for third term as Atwater mayor
ATWATER -- Mayor Bruce Baker won his re-election bid Tuesday in a three-way race, earning him another two-year term. The unofficial tally had Baker with 255 votes; Brad Fluck with 223 and Jerry Spencer with 108 votes. "I'm glad that I got re-elec...
ATWATER -- Mayor Bruce Baker won his re-election bid Tuesday in a three-way race, earning him another two-year term.
The unofficial tally had Baker with 255 votes; Brad Fluck with 223 and Jerry Spencer with 108 votes.
"I'm glad that I got re-elected again. It was a close race and I was glad for the big turnout," said Baker.
"I do want to thank the people who supported me over the years," he said.
Baker, a former city councilman, was first elected mayor in 2004. This was the third election since 2004 that Spencer, also a former city councilman, and Baker have run against each other for mayor.
Baker, 58, said he and the council would "do another good job" for the city.
He issued a "big thank you to the city of Atwater" and said he hopes that he and the Council "can do the job they elected to do."
In a debate last month, top city issues that surfaced were ways to increase business in Atwater, whether to maintain the city's own police department and if the City Council should refurbish the Hotel Atwater for a municipal building.
In an interview late Tuesday, Baker said the hotel will be one of the top issues on the docket as the council decides "what we're going to do there."
He said the Council will also work with the economic development authority to "spike the economy a little bit."
All three candidates have a long history of community involvement in Atwater.
Baker had asked people to support him based on his experience and the good working relationship he has with the City Council that has "done some good things" and that he has more to do.
Touting his years as a supervisor on his job with the railroad and ability to work with people, Fluck, 55, said he would "bring new leadership" to the council.
Spencer said he would listen to people and get them involved to make the town better.
Spencer said he would try to lower the town's taxes. "People are getting tired of taxes," he said.
Baker, who owns and operates Atwater Equipment, said being mayor "looks like a simple job," but it comes down to working with the council to make the "best decision for the majority" of residents.
Incumbent councilmen Shane Hagstrom and Scott Bjornson were also re-elected. They ran unopposed.