Mayor Kleinschmidt announces bid for second term

It took just one short whistle to bring about 30 chattering voices to a silence in the dim lighting of The Crunkleton Thursday night.

With the eyes of his closest friends, family and coworkers on him, Chapel Hill Mayor Mark Kleinschmidt announced that he will file for a chance at a second term tomorrow at the Orange County Board of Elections in Hillsborough.

“This really has been a childhood dream of mine coming true,” he said to a room filled with applause. “I think we should try again. There’s still more to be done.”

If he wins the election in November, Kleinschmidt said he wants to focus on continuing to drive life back into Chapel Hill’s downtown by getting residents involved in drafting the town’s newest comprehensive plan.

“We’ll be facing a lot of issues around growth,” he said. “The question we need to answer is how is our community going to handle the trauma of change?”

As of now, no one else has announced a campaign for mayor. Official filing opens Friday and runs through July 15.

Council hopeful and recent UNC graduate Lee Storrow stood in the crowd at The Crunkleton and clapped in approval following Kleinscmidt’s announcement.

“It’s really exciting, and we’ll see what happens tomorrow,” he said.

Kleinschmidt’s sister Michelle Hoover, who will serve as his treasurer for the fall election, said she thinks it’s great Kleinschmidt has decided to run for reelection.

“I’m hoping he’ll be running unopposed,” she said. “That makes my job that much easier.”

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