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    Kingsport alderman candidates speak at forum

    By Slater Teague,


    KINGSPORT, Tenn. (WJHL) — Candidates for Kingsport alderman spoke at a forum Tuesday evening ahead of the upcoming election.

    Four candidates are vying for three spots on the Board of Mayor and Aldermen, including incumbents Darrell Duncan and James Phillips and challengers Morris Baker and Julie Byers.

    Morris cited his leadership skills from his years of working in the community.

    “I think I can bring common sense. I think I can bring pragmatism,” Morris told News Channel 11. “I think I can bring a vision of leadership that we can see some things happen in Kingsport to move us to another level.”

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    Duncan has served as an alderman for seven years and said he and other aldermen have navigated several issues in recent years.

    “I think it is experience,” Duncan said. “I mean, if you’ve been on a board, we’ve went through a lot during this. I mean, we had COVID, we’ve had a lot of different things with our budget, and so I bring a lot to, I think, to the table, especially on the experience side.”

    Phillips, who is also an incumbent, said he is running for re-election to make the community a better place.

    “I’m a small business owner, my wife and I own our own business, and they’re the people who write the checks, balance the checkbooks, and understand what it means to spend that money and so, I think it’s good to have that representation on the board and I think that I have a lot of experience in the city of Kingsport,” Phillips said.

    Byers, whose term on the Board of Education expires at the end of August, said she can bring a different perspective to the board because she did not grow up in Kingsport but has been involved in the community.

    “I’ve been a scout leader for more than 15 years, both for the Boy Scouts and the Girl Scouts,” Byers said. “I wouldn’t have a passion for the community if I didn’t plant 10,000 daffodil bulbs at Domtar park or pull 250 tires out of a cold February lake. So I just want to give back to the community.”

    Election Day is Aug. 1. Early voting begins July 12.

    Copyright 2024 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

    For the latest news, weather, sports, and streaming video, head to WJHL | Tri-Cities News & Weather.

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