David Crim’s brief challenge to incumbent Sandy Springs Mayor Rusty Paul is over, as Crim formally withdrew from the race Aug. 29. That means Paul will return for a second term in office.
“I just withdrew today after thinking about it for a long time,” Crim said. “I’m just realizing trying to fix this [city] is much more time that I have and much more time that I’m willing to take away from my kids.”
He also cited as a factor in his decision the fact that the city would have to spend extra money to hold a mayoral election. According to city spokesperson Sharon Kraun, all noncompetitive municipal races will not actually go on the ballot and the sole candidate will be declared the automatic winner. In practice, that means that the City Council District 4 race between Le’Dor Milteer and Jody Reichel will be the only city race on the ballot.
Crim said he filed to challenge the mayor due to concern about large redevelopments and city spending, which he said many longtime residents also worry about.
“The city was founded pretty much on…having local control over apartment development and stopping the apartment development that was occurring,” Crim said. “It’s just a total reversal of the whole reason we were founded.”
Crim filed a formal affidavit of withdrawal, which officially ended his candidacy and the election.
Paul will now retain the Mayor’s Office without opposition. In an email, he expressed enthusiasm about seeing through some of the major planning efforts the city undertook during his first term, as well as a promised challenge to the city of Atlanta’s management of the local water system.
Updated version: This story has been updated to clarify that the city will not hold elections in uncontested races, and to add Paul’s comments.