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Filing begins next Tuesday, Dec. 16, and former Richmond City Councilman Chris Keen says that he plans on filing to run for office in the First Ward.
Keen won election to the First Ward seat last April, but was soon ousted by the city council last June for missing meetings without giving notice or being excused.
Keen was voted off of the city council by a 4-2 vote, an action which has faced scrutiny since.
Keen, as recently as a month ago, had threatened to file a lawsuit challenging his removal. Missouri case law provided by Richmond City Attorney Brian Hall showed that the council needed a majority vote of the number of seats on the council, which would be five. Furthermore, case law says that Keen should have been allowed to take his seat and vote on the matter which he was denied.
Councilman Dave Powell and former Councilman Ralph Bennett voted no.
Keen told The Daily News Wednesday that at this time he does not plan on pursuing any lawsuit.
“I’m not pressing any legal actions and wasting more time. In the best interest of my family, I’m just leaving it alone,” he said.
Keen also addressed allegations that he was not a resident of the city when he was on the council. Keen said Wednesday that he picked up his tax bills for Richmond and Ray County and plans on paying them today.
Keen said his desire to run centers around his assessment of city services. Keen said the city’s budget and how it is structured needs to be seriously looked at. Keen said some members of the council would rather focus on items the city cannot afford and does not want to face tough questions.
“City services are a mess. Our sewer system is bad. Our water system is bad. The city is not taking responsibility for things. They’re focusing on other issues instead of focusing on the issues facing them because they don’t want to think about it.”
Candidates have until Jan. 15 to file, starting Tuesday.