LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - One day after State Representative Warwick Sabin announced his intentions to run for Little Rock mayor in 2018, Mayor Mark Stodola released a statement saying he's focusing on the city instead of a re-election campaign.
While Stodola confirmed he will be seeking re-election in 2018 in the statement, he claimed that his "number one priority right now is Little Rock" and the current challenges the city faces.
In recent weeks, Little Rock has seen an increase in drive-by shootings and a mass shooting at a nightclub that left 28 injured. This increase in violent crimes also comes during a time when the police department faces a shortage of roughly 70 police officers.
"I am going to continue to serve in my roles as mayor of our great city by working with our city's leaders and our community to tackle these challenges," he said, "from public safety to jobs and economic development to quality of life for our citizens, head-on."
In the statement, Stodola used Rep. Sabin's own campaign slogan, saying that since his first day in office he has dedicated "new energy and new ideas" into making Little Rock a great place for people to live.
"When it is appropriate to launch a campaign, I will look forward to a healthy debate and conversation about our city's future," Stodola said.