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Salt Lake mayoral race: Becker rolls to 2nd term

Published November 8, 2011 8:21 pm
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2011, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker rolled to re-election Tuesday.

"It's certainly a gratifying result," Becker said. "I've tried to do what is in the best interest of the city and engage people proactively. I read it as an endorsement of both what I have done and how I have done it."

His opponent, J. Allen Kimball — who turns 80 next month and previously acknowledged he was fighting for the other "16 percent," a reference to Becker's 84 percent approval rating — said his long-shot challenge was worth it. "I've had a good time."

Becker snagged 75 percent of the vote compared with Kimball's 24 percent. More than 200 voters wrote in a candidate, though no write-in hopeful officially filed.

Becker, who celebrated his victory with supporters at Squatters, has essentially been in his second term since July 15, when no credible challengers filed to run against him. So, with that speed bump called an election out of the way, what might drive Becker's next four years?

Expect livability measures to rank high. The mayor is eager to see the completion of the Sugar House streetcar as well as makeover of North Temple and its airport TRAX line. He will push for a Broadway-class theater on Main Street, emphasize walkable neighborhoods, add still more bike lanes and seek to protect the canyons, watershed and open spaces.

The mayor faced some rocky moments in his first term including two oil spills, The Leonardo drama and legal challenges over a sports complex near Rose Park.







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