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A former North Little Rock mayor announced Wednesday that he will run again for the office he held in the 1980s.

North Little Rock Parks and Recreation Director Terry Hartwick said in a news release that he intends to run for mayor when Joe Smith's term concludes at the end of 2020. Smith announced last month that he would not seek a third term as mayor.

Hartwick, 70, served as North Little Rock's mayor from 1984 to 1988, and as president of North Little Rock's Chamber of Commerce from 2001 to 2016.

"Through an explanatory committee, I feel confident that my goals and visions for the future of this great city align with the citizens of North Little Rock," Hartwick said in the news release. "My commitment to the city along with my public service lifetime career make me an exemplary mayoral candidate for 2020."

Hartwick's announcement didn't come as a surprise. In late July he unveiled a campaign page on Facebook, which he described as "exploratory."

Tracy Steele, 56, a former state senator and state representative, and Debi Ross, 65, a Ward 1 City Council member, also have expressed interest in running for the office. No candidacy will be official until the July-August filing period for North Little Rock municipal offices.

State Desk on 10/10/2019

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