Burlington Mayor Bob Kiss has announced that he won’t seek re-election for a third term in March, saying Vermont’s largest city is poised to move forward without him at the helm.
Kiss has served six years as Burlington’s mayor. The past few have been marked by controversies about how the city paid bills for Burlington Telecom, its telephone and Internet utility. There has also been debate about underfunding of the city’s pension obligations.
Kiss says he decided that he’s accomplished many of the things that he hoped to, and will now pursue other interests.
(Kiss) "I think that people have to think about that, how long they serve. Ultimately what I decided for me the best course was to serve out this term and move on to other things."
(Host) Kiss says he enjoyed serving six years in the Vermont House and he may try to run again.
The mayor says he’ll consider running for the state Senate, depending on how seats are shuffled during the redistricting process this winter.
Chittenden County currently has six senators, who are elected at-large. Some proposals call for that district to be divided up. Kiss says he’ll wait to see how that debate is resolved before making a decision.
Republican City Councilor Kurt Wright, who fell to Kiss in 2009, is running for the seat, and airport commissioner Miro Weinberger and State Senator Tim Ashe are vying for the Democratic nomination for Burlington mayor.
Weinberger and Ashe tied the initial Democratic caucus, which will reconvene December 11th. That same same day Burlington Progressives will caucus to make their nomination.
"Based on conversations I have had with many Progressives, I do not believe [Kiss] would have won the Progressive nomination if he had sought a third term," said Elijah Bergman, vice-chair of the Burlington City Progressive Party