JOHNSON CITY, TN (WJHL) – Next month, two new commissioners will begin serving Johnson City.
Tuesday night voters decided Todd Fowler and Joe Wise would join incumbent Ralph Van Brocklin in the three open seats, meaning current mayor Clayton Stout lost his bid for re-election.
“I’m honored by the trust that those nearly 10 thousand citizens put in me by casting their ballot,” said Wise.
“I’m humbled by the response of the city of Johnson City and the votes that I got,” Fowler said.
Fowler, Wise and incumbent Van Brocklin all won more votes than current mayor and fellow candidate Stout.
Though Stout said he’s disappointed he lost his bid for re-election, he congratulated the winners and is keeping a positive outlook.
“It’s just been a humbling experience, and I’m very grateful for the city to give me this opportunity,” Stout said.
Stout, along with the majority of city commissioners, previously voted to move the city election to November. Voter turnout was much stronger, but Stout said he doesn’t think that decision backfired in this election.
“There’s no regrets with that, I don’t know if that would have affected the outcome in any way,” Stout said.
The commission chooses the mayor in Johnson City. Who that will be isn’t yet known, but the winners already know what they want to accomplish.
“I think we need to work on infrastructure, we need to make sure our roads are good, we need to recruit new businesses to the area, need to get a good tax base,” Fowler said.
“As we come together as a group of five, I think it’s going to be important to step back and say where is it we want to see the city go and how can we all participate in making that happen,” said Wise.
Wise said he will not continue to serve on the Washington County Commission.
The newly elected commissioners will assume their roles in December. City leaders told us the commissioner elects will be sworn in the first Monday in December and will attend their first meeting on the 15th of the month.
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