Former Elkhorn Mayor Runs For Omaha City Council

The race for the Omaha City Council is heating up as a familiar face in western Douglas County tosses his hat into the ring.

The new candidate has years of experience when it comes to running a city.

Phil Klein made it official this morning.

The former mayor of Elkhorn is running for the district 6 Omaha City Council seat.

"I think I have a lot to offer the city and the district in particular,” Klein said. “Almost 20 years as mayor and four as a city councilman in Elkhorn."

Klein left politics after the 2007 Omaha annexation of Elkhorn.

Being a familiar face in the district helped.

"I counted on that,” he said. “And it was really nice to see some of the people that I dealt with over the years and it was good to hear them and hear their concerns and they wished me well."

The incumbent in District 6, Franklin Thompson has an uphill battle to retain his seat for a fourth term and he knows it.

"Seven councilmen and a mayor annexed Elkhorn,” Thompson said. “I am the remaining visible person and I understand that I have to be the one that carries the cross for all eight of us."

Thompson says he only pulled about 15 percent of the vote from Elkhorn four years ago.

Thompson recalled a conversation he had with an Elkhorn resident.

"’’We love you as a person, we think you're a neat person but you'll never get our vote…’ and I said, ‘why?’ and he said ‘guess why,’ and I said ‘was it the annexation?’ and he said ‘yeah.’"

Thompson says he'll let his record speak for itself.

"The voters have the last say,” he said. “If they want someone else in here than I want what they want. If they want me, that's what I want but if they want someone else, than that's what I want too."

Both candidates say the biggest concerns in District 6 surround snow removal and keeping park in good condition.

Both support growth in the Elkhorn downtown area and want to improve the economic climate in west Omaha.

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