The possibility of Jennifer Mossotti once again serving on the Urban County Council was so welcome that we endorsed her for the Nov. 6 election during the primary contest.
The reasons were simple: During four terms of representing the 9th District, she was a voice of sanity, an effective lawmaker and a leader unfraid to tackle some of the city's toughest issues: the fairness ordinance, the smoking ban, rural land preservation and domestic partner benefits for city employees. And the longtime Realtor withstood a targeted campaign by developers to oust her.
And all the while, she successfully pushed for parks, traffic abatement and other quality-of-life issues throughout her district. For example, she headed up the negotiations on 500 acres of infill development along Reynolds Road near Fayette Mall and secured funding for the Clays Mill Road expansion.
Mossotti stepped down in 2004 in part to care for her ill mother. Councilman Jay McChord, who followed her in the job, is not running for reelection. Mossotti served as political director of Jim Gray's mayoral campaign and briefly as his community and council liaison before deciding on another run for council.
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Her challenger is Bill Polyniak, a salesman for a box manufacturing firm. He is passionate about preventing Lexington from making the kind of budgeting and economic development mistakes he saw in his home state of California.
It is clear from the League of Women Voters' candidate forum that Polyniak has been educating himself about the city and the district since the primary. More civic involvement would deepen his understanding of local issues and help him build wider connections.
In this election, District 9 — and the city as a whole — would benefit from having Mossotti in place to help guide Lexington during uncertain times.
The unendorsed candidate may submit a 250-word response by noon Monday.