Stothert Promises to Work with Police,Firefighters

Nicole Ebat

OMAHA(Fox 42 News)-- Another Omaha election is over and voters handily picked Jean Stothert as the next mayor.

Bitter fights broke out during the campaign, especially between Stothert and the fire and police unions.

It's no secret the unions support Mayor Jim Suttle, even taking out ads against Stothert in the days leading up to the campaign.

Now, the campaign signs have been rolled up and put away and, whether their candidate won or loss, people are looking forward.

"Democrats will be willing to work with the new administration and we're all willing to work to make this city strong so best wishes to the new mayor Stothert," said Kurt Goetzinger shortly after Suttle gave his concession speech Tuesday night.

Now that the election is over, Stothert is promising to let bygones be bygones.

"If you wear a police or firefighter badge, please know I will be honored to serve as your mayor and work with you to help make our community safer," said Stothert during her victory speech.

The Firefighters' Union said their willing to work with the new mayor-elect to move things forward.

"The time for campaigning is over. It's time for governing and we'll have to move forward and ensure that we're providing the best possible service to the citizens that we serve," said Steve Leclaire, President of the Local 385 union.

Leclaire pointed out that the firefighters do have a contract through the end of 2014.

At a luncheon Wednesday, Stothert said she will ask the city council to return union contract negotiating powers back to the mayor.

"I feel like my experience I've had--not only on the school board, but with negotiating the fire contract, the fire management, the civilian contract--that I do have the experience to get it done."

Stothert said one of the first things she'll do as mayor is evaluate city departments. She said there is likely to be changes once she's in office.