Douglas County Commissioner Marc Kraft, a longtime local leader, to retire

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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) -- A longtime political player here in Omaha announced Tuesday that he will not seek re-election as Douglas County Commissioner.

Commissioner and former City Councilman Marc Kraft cited health reasons — and the desire to let others serve — and reasons he will not seek another term on the county board in the upcoming election.

"I know the people already running in my district, and there may be more candidates," he said in a news release announcing the decision. "Where any of those candidates may differ with me on one or more issues, I think the voters will have good choices from a field of honorable individuals."

Kraft, who has been in public office for nearly 20 years, has worked on county issues and initiatives covering everything from smoking bans in restaurants to the Juvenile Justice Center.

"Time has proven we were right on all those issues,” he said in the release. “But none of those were easy challenges to tackle at the time.”

Kraft said he's ready to spend more time with his wife, children, and grandchildren.

"I thank the voters for their support and all the hard-working public servants who make Douglas County and Omaha a great place to live and work,” Kraft said in the release.

Kraft, who has previously served as president of the Omaha City Council and chairman of the Douglas County Board, also thanked colleagues and staff he had worked with through the years.

“Now I look forward to a new chapter in my life, traveling and spending more time with my wife, children and grandchildren. Thanks to everyone, serving the people as a Commissioner and Councilman has been a great joy.”