Councilmember Howard Smith is telling supporters that he still supports Mayor Ginger Nelson and the downtown baseball stadium in a new statement.
On Thursday, Councilmember Howard Smith announced that he is still supporting Mayor Ginger Nelson, as rumors are circulating that he is planning a bid for mayor in 2019. In the statement, Smith said that a recently created Facebook page does not reflect his views on Nelson and that he is continuing to support her agenda on the City Council.
"It has come to my attention that a Facebook page has been created called: Howard Smith for Mayor 2019," Smith said in a statement released through his campaign website. "I want this to be crystal clear. I did not start this page, nor do I support it. I am excited to continue my work on the Amarillo City Council. I have absolutely no intention of running for Mayor."
As we previously reported, a Facebook page began appearing last month calling for Smith to run for mayor in 2019, against incumbent Ginger Nelson. The page, titled Howard Smith for Mayor 2019, says in a biography that it is run by a "group of concerned citizens."
In addition, Smith went on to say that he is not contributing money to a recently created GoFundMe fundraiser, which is raising money to pay legal fees related to seeking an injunction on the downtown baseball park. At least one donation has been made in Smith's name since the start of the fundraiser, however, Smith says that the donation was made by an impostor.
"Additionally, a GoFundMe account has been created to pay legal fees to oppose the building of the MPEV," Smith said. "I, Howard Smith, did not contribute to this fund. I support the MPEV."
Smith went on in his statement to say that he hopes that anyone utilizing his name "stop[s] immediately."
The Amarillo Pioneer did not reach out to Mayor Ginger Nelson for comment, as she has previously declined to interview with the Amarillo Pioneer.
Smith was elected to the Amarillo City Council in 2017, defeating incumbent Mark Nair to earn his first term on the City Council. Prior to that election, Smith served several terms on the Amarillo Independent School District Board of Trustees.
For more information about Howard Smith, please visit https://www.facebook.com/HowardSmithforAmarillo.