Posted on

State of the City

West Memphis mayor addresses the community


West Memphis mayor addresses the community


During last Thursday’s City Council meeting, West Memphis Mayor Marco McClendon gave his annual State of the City Address. The following are excerpts from the mayor’s address: I believe as council and mayor, we must continue to support the will of the people, be their voice and commit to making West Memphis a better city. I embrace the challenges ahead. There may be hills to climb but I look back to see all the hills we have overcome. Wherever the challenge is, we must embrace it. Whether it’s opportunities for our children, adults, or seniors we must move now to make these things happen.

I ask all of you to look 50 years down the road and I ask yourself, “Did I make significant changes to make our city better? Did I commit to making the tough choices that my grandchildren and great grandchildren are here in West Memphis because of the decisions that I made? Was my decision the right decision or the popular decision? Did I think outside the box to make decisions that made a great impact on this community?”

West Memphis is a city that’s filled with opportunities. There are going to be issues that need to be addressed. It really doesn’t matter who is in that middle seat because it takes all of us to make West Memphis be what we all know it can be.

Keeping this city clean has defiantly been a goal of mine. When I got the New Sanitation Director he knew my expectations. We changed the routes to support the days of the week for a better daily cleaning.

Our grass and demo team went into a trailer park and cleaned and demo a dead area and gave it life. Took an area from darkness and despair to opportunity and light. Our utility department has installed fiber in many parts of our city. Giving our city a system and pathway to affordable internet. Continuing to improve on necessary services all while maintaining some of the lowest rates in our city.

Our planning department now can promote housing


From page A1

and encourage new builders to build has brokered deals to take ownership of existing properties, they have also focused on areas that may have been overlooked for some time and started a functioning land bank. Yes, our focus has been on cleaning this city up from the east to the west.

Our fire department has taken their service to the next level by creating a jr. firefighting program for inner city youth to expose them to what we do in the fire service.

A & P continues to think outside the box with endeavors of showing the city possibilities. When I think of the department’s heads, I’m happy to the directions of where we are going in.

Our Park & Recreation department has taken our parks to the next level. Planning yearly events, overseeing the High Tower Park improvements and taking care of all our existing parks. Completing the new Inclusive Park that’s designed for children with disabilities. Getting ready to jump start renovations to our Tilden Rogers Park Complex. See we are Giving our young people something they can enjoy. An idol mind is a devil’s workshop.

I’m so proud of our economic development department. We have been swinging hard for a long time. Being consistent, dedicated, and focused, I believe economic development has placed West Memphis in a situation where we can truly be proud, real soon. Family Dollar is official and ready to kick off with a total of 600 employees by July. I’m proud that for the 1st time in West Memphis history, the animal shelter is getting a new home.

Through a public private partnership with Southland, we were able to provide a new home for the director and staff, giving a new sanctuary and care facility for our animals.

Crime continues to decrease in our city. I thank the men and women who works hard to protect and serve our community. I thank the officers who are part of our community outreach as well as the officers who are trenches in fighting crime, reducing guns in our street, and maintaining a level of protection in our city. The citizens believe in this message of Hope for this community. Their actions have shown that they support this administration’s actions. Making better decisions day to day. Yes, one crime is one crime too many, but not by my words but by facts to support this. In 12 of the 13 categories, crimes continue to drop by at least 40 percent.

I reflect on my question to this council, how we done everything we could to make this city great. As mayor I’m always going to focus on ideas, meet with individuals to move this city forward. Now I’m asking the legislative body to get on board with me as we continue to make things happen. I understand you have a big role in legislating this city and overseeing a balanced budget. But I have an obligation also to administrate this city and a vision I believe God has giving me. Keep in Mind where we are now and where we can be. I want you to think big. We must all understand that we work for the people and not ourselves. Thank you and God Bless.

The portraits of past West Memphis Mayors look on as McClendon gives his yearly address.

Photo by Don Wilburn

Scroll Up