Sevier County Mayor Waters to run for another term

Sep. 19, 2013 @ 11:58 PM

Sevier County Mayor Larry Waters has announced he’s set to run for another term at the position.

He announced his intention at the end of Monday’s meeting of the Sevier County Commission. After the meeting, he said he wanted to let county commissioners know about the decision ahead of a reception planned for 5:30 p.m. Sept. 26 at the Twin Creeks Pavilion in the National Park.

Waters was a principal in the Sevier County School system until 1978, when he was elected Sevier County Executive. He has overseen the county government since that time. The title switched from executive to mayor statewide in 2003.

He acknowledged he gave some thought to stepping down at the end of this term. “I did give it a lot of thought. I debated it quite a bit but we have a number of ongoing projects that I’d like to see through to their completion,” he said.

Those include the Rocky Top Sports Complex in Gatlinburg, the development of a new industrial park in Kodak and an expansion of the county jail, he said.

“All of those are projects I’d like to see through until they can get completed and up and running so I felt like it was important to try to have that continuity in completing them,” he said. “That was really the key.”

Waters is the first Sevier County incumbent to publicly announce he is running again. District Attorney General Jimmy Dunn, who serves Sevier County as well as Jefferson, Cocke and Grainger counties, has also announced he is running for re-election.

While she hasn’t made a formal announcement, local activist Kim Pierce has indicated she plans to run for mayor. Pierce has run for sheriff in the past.

Also during the meeting, the commission reappointed Waters as chairman and Commissioner Jimmie Temple as chairman pro tem for the next year, along with reappointing the same members to its committees.

In other action, the commission approved a renewal of the interlocal agreement creating Sevier Solid Waste, and appointed Paul Parrott to the planning commission to complete the term of his wife, June, who died earlier this year.

jfarrell@themountainpress.com