Ed DeFore intends for his political career to outlast the city of Macon.
After 10 full, four-year terms on Macon City Council and a year so far into an 11th, he said Monday he will run for a seat on the new consolidated commission that takes office next January.
Im going to keep on keeping on for constituents, DeFore said Monday.
Though the new government is required to cut the combined city-county budget by 20 percent within five years, he said, the melded city and county reserve funds should provide enough of a cushion that commissioners shouldnt have to talk about raising taxes for years to come.
I definitely will not vote to increase any taxes, DeFore said.
He will seek the new District 6 seat, which covers much of western Bibb County -- plus a small projection across Interstate 475 that includes DeFores home. Nine commissioners and a countywide mayor will be elected this year, replacing the mayor of Macon, 15-member City Council and five-member Bibb County Commission.
The new District 6 includes the residences of three incumbents: DeFore, Commission Chairman Sam Hart and current District 4 Commissioner Joe Allen.
Hart didnt return a call seeking comment Monday, but has previously said he hasnt decided whether to run for the countywide mayors job -- not mentioning a commission seat.
And Monday, Allen took himself out of the running for the District 6 seat. He promised voters that if they approved the special purpose local option sales tax in 2011 and consolidation in 2012, he wouldnt run for commission, Allen said. But that still leaves open a run for the mayors job or chairmanship of the Macon Water Authority, he said.
Im leaning heavily toward the seat of mayor, Allen said.
According to a Telegraph analysis, District 6 voters are 54 percent Republican and 43 percent Democratic. Of the 17,200 residents, about 13,200 are of voting age. Of those residents about 61 percent are white, and 34 percent are black.
DeFore, 81, a Democrat, won his first council term in 1971. He also served on the Bibb County Board of Education and is the citys representative on the Macon Water Authority board.
In the latter position, DeFore said, he supported construction of the authoritys reservoir, guaranteeing a good water supply for years to come. He noted that the American Water Works Association voted Macons water the best-tasting in the country in 2009.
DeFore lobbied to get a police precinct returned to Macon Mall after a rash of purse snatchings and assaults, and he backed establishment of another precinct on Bloomfield Road. Some years ago he introduced an ordinance requiring security cameras in stores, then pressed the county to do the same, he said.
If elected to the new government, DeFore said hed like to serve on the commissions public safety committee.
Information from Telegraph archives was used in this report. To contact writer Jim Gaines, call 744-4489.