Moss Point mayor won't seek reelection

By Patrice Clark- bio | email

MOSS POINT, MS (WLOX) - Xavier Bishop ran for mayor to bring change to Moss Point.

"We had lost considerable industry. Certainly the moral was low, and that was one of the factors that led to my decision to run. Our tax base was shrinking, and the population was in decline," Mayor Bishop said.

Then Hurricane Katrina hit the city and devastated it.  Bishop said from that day on he has worked to rebuild the city's infrastructure, and make Moss Point bigger and better.

"Our tax base is expanding, and our morale is up. I think what I am most excited about is we have plans for a new municipal buildings, city hall and fire station, hopefully even a police station," Bishop said. "Of course, there is a new water treatment plant that has come online."

But Bishop's leadership has not always been welcomed. The mayor admits at times he butted heads with Moss Point aldermen. And he's taken a lot of criticism, especially when he said "no" to starting a citizens review board to work with the Police Department.

"What I have done is to pursue what is in the best interest of Moss Point and the citizenry, and sometimes that has placed me in opposition with others. I enjoy being the underdog."

Now Bishop says it's time for someone else to take the lead, because he's getting out of politics.

"I am not a superman, and I am certainly not in a position to get things done solely on my own.  Given the quality of leadership in Moss Point, I have little doubt in my mind there a number of people other there that can step into this office and continue the progress that has taken place over the past four years," Mayor Bishop said.

The mayor even offered some advice for his successor.

"Fasten your seat belt."

Mayor Xavier Bishop said he's not sure if he will stay in Moss Point once his term is up. So far, eight people have qualified to run for Moss Point mayor.