GRAND HAVEN, Mich. — After a slim defeat in Tuesday's primary election, Grand Haven Mayor Geri McCaleb will not have a chance at serving a fifth term.
"People talk about term limits, and elections are term limits," McCaleb said. "It's time for somebody else, and that's fine with me. I have no regrets."
McCaleb finished in third place behind city council members Josh Brugger and Bob Monetza. Of 1,837 votes cast, Brugger finished with 741, Monetza garnered 562 and McCaleb earned 534.
"The votes spoke clearly that they're ready for a little bit of change in Grand Haven," Brugger said.
Brugger and Monetza will face off in the general election on Nov. 5 and will debate during the fall. Brugger wants the city to start financing improvements with cash.
"I have a hope for the city of Grand Haven that we can actually be debt free by 2034," he said. "It'll be our 200 year anniversary, and I can't think of a better gift to give to future generations than a debt free city."
Monetza said he doesn't plan to make any major changes if elected.
"I don't come into this with an agenda to turn the town upside down," he said. "There will be differences in how I will conduct meetings. We're a well managed city. That's the kind of thing that, as politicians, you want to keep going well."
Both Brugger and Monetza served on the city council and planning commission. The two vary greatly in their approaches on the job.
"I take a very rational and logical approach to gathering data and weighing evidence and looking at all sides of all issues and making logical rational decisions," Monetza said. "And I've been willing to leaving my decision making open until all the information is in."
Brugger said he takes a "middle common ground" approach to moving good policy forward in his hometown.
"I'm raising the fourth generation," he said. "I think that having young kids living here and going to school here puts me in a unique position to be very in tune with the direction that Grand Haven is headed."
McCaleb said she will continue to work towards passing an infrastructure bill in the fall and advocate for building a new power plant in the city. Come November, she is looking forward to spending more time with her family.
"It will be an interesting time because I've been in this position for a long time," McCaleb said. "We'll see what happens."
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