By Everett Brazil, III
The Newkirk Herald Journal
NEWKIRK — Newkirk native Brian Hobbs has served the community for the past two years as mayor, and has seen many positive changes, as well as problems that need to be addressed. He is ready to continue seeing change in the community, and is seeking the vote of the community for a second, full term as mayor.
Hobbs is running against opponent Dereck Cassady. The election will be April 6.
Hobbs was voted as mayor two years ago to finish out the final two years of former mayor Kirk Brown, who resigned from the position. He sought the position because he saw a lot of problems in the city, especially infrastructure.
“It was a water quality issue. I felt it needed to be addressed,” he said.
It wasn’t long before he noticed much bigger problems with infrastructure than just water.
“Our electrical system is outdated, our sewer system is outdated and our water treatment plant is also out of date,” he said.
As mayor, Hobbs has had the opportunity to work closely with community leaders, including electrical supervisor Joe Huffman and water supervisor Greg Summit to start working toward solutions.
“I asked them to submit a plan to correct the problems that we have, by order of importance, and they did that,” Hobbs said.
Hobbs has also seen a lot of positive changes during his term, such is refurbishing of the city’s water wells along the Arkansas River, as well as a sewage lift location in the community.
“We have redone a sewer lift site, and we’re working on our second one out of three,” he said.
Hobbs also sees that much work needs to be done on infrastructure, especially electrical work to be done at the town’s substation so electricity isn’t lost, he said.
Seeing the changes, Hobbs is hopeful for a second term to address more issues the city is facing.
“I want to make sure these projects get done,” Hobbs said.
Hobbs is also working with other government leaders in Oklahoma City for help moving Newkirk forward.
“I am also working at the state level, and I have people looking for grants for our swimming pool and parks, and hopefully, we will hear back from them,” he said.
In addition to his role as mayor, Hobbs also ran for State House of Representatives in 2018, and is President of the Kay County GOP party and is also active in the Oklahoma GOP party.
Hobbs is thankful for everyone’s votes in the first election, and is looking to continue serving the community in a second term.
“I want to make sure we continue to get our problems fixed, and we need strong leadership to do it,” he said. “I hope everyone supports me again.”