Combs To Return As Mayor Of Gulfport

Former Gulfport Mayor Ken Combs will return to that post after winning the office in Tuesday's general election.

Combs beat democrat Zachary Beasley and independent candidate Gordon Lewis in the general election. He had already defeated current Mayor Bob Short in a primary run-off in May.

At his victory celebration Tuesday night,Combs made a promise to the residents of Gulfport.

"I'd like to thank all the people of Gulfport for the confidence in me. I look forward to working for you hard the next four years, and try to solve some of the many problems we have in Gulfport, water and sewer, and some economic development that we badly need and stabilization of our fiscal situation within the city."

Combs served as mayor before losing to Mayor Short four years ago. Winning again in the new millennium puts him in a unique position, Combs said.

"I'm the first mayor that has ever carried both old Gulfport and new Gulfport so to speak. I think that's a sign that we need to be heading toward one city, quit being divisive and all work together for all of us. So I invite everyone to join with me, and let's put aside any past differences."

Democrat Zachary Beasley took 39 percent of the vote Tuesday. Despite the loss, he pledged his support to Mayor-Elect Combs.

"I'm somewhat disappointed, but at the same time,I think we ran a good race, ran a very close race, and I think the people of Gulfport have spoken as to who they want to be the mayor of this city the next for years," Beasley said. "I'm going to go along with that, and I'm going to try to support Mr. Combs as much as I can."

Mayor-Elect Combs says he's already working on some projects. He says he's met with a group of people interested in building a 100,000 square foot office building in the downtown Gulfport that would be in conjunction with the new federal building.

Combs also says he also has some people in town looking for a new theme park location. He says he'll be talking with them in the next few days.