Ward 2 candidates vow to tackle crime, spur development

Eight Democratic candidates have rushed into an opening on the Jackson City Council created by Ward 2 Councilman Leslie Burl McLemore’s retirement, each promising to attack quality-of-life issues on the city’s north end.

As a group, they say they plan to work with the ward’s powerful network of homeowners’ associations on issues of crime, infrastructure and business development. Separately, each touts his or her qualifications for the job.

Because no Republicans or independents are running for the post, the seat will be claimed in the primary May 5, or more likely, in the May 19 runoff between the top two primary vote-getters.

Donald Beard

Beard, 61, said he got into the race because of his frustration over problems facing the city. Beard, the director of juvenile services in the state Department of Human Services, said his 18 years in state government give him a leg up in solving some of those problems.