Government & Politics  November 8, 2023

Greeley voters are clear: They like Mayor Gates

GREELEY — Greeley voters made their intentions clear in the race for mayor of Greeley. Incumbent Mayor John Gates had a commanding lead as of Wednesday morning en route to his fourth term.

Gates led with 12,376 votes as of 6 a.m., with challengers Jim Ethridge and W.D. “Bill” Gillard trailing with 2,109 and 2,058 votes, respectively.

Gates first won election in 2017, winning reelection in 2019 and 2021. He previously served on the Greeley City Council from 2009 to 2017.

Two Greeley City Council races were uncontested. Tommy Butler was unopposed in Ward I, and Dale Hall ran unopposed in Ward 4. Butler recorded 2,310 votes as of 6 a.m., with Hall tallying 4,209.

Greeley’s at-large council race saw Melissa McDonald, Frank Freeman and Sean Short competing, with McDonald ahead with 8,378 votes, followed by Freeman, with 4,982, and Short, 1,832.

Gates, reached by BizWest after additional votes dropped on the Weld County Clerk & Recorder’s site after 8:30 p.m., said he had not heard from his opponents but appeared confident of victory.

“I’m feeling good,” Gates said. “I’m feeling great. We just had an update, and the margin is pretty great, and I feel like I’ve been re-elected for my final term, and I’m so appreciative and honored, and I thank the Greeley voters.

Gates said, if the margins remain in his favor, he would focus on growth, diversity of housing, infrastructure and homelessness.

“We’ve got a lot going on, and while I mulled over possibly stepping out, it wasn’t a good time to step aside,” he said. “I feel good that I ran. I feel good that it appears I’m going to be re-elected, and I like our City Council a lot, and I want to continue to serve with them.”

Gates said he supports “housing first” for the city’s homeless population, working to house the city’s population of 60 chronically homeless individuals, as well as providing mental health, drugs, alcohol and medical treatment.

Gates said he also wants to ensure that Greeley — one of the fastest-growing communities in the state — builds additional single-family housing, not just multifamily units, as well as additional commercial amenities.

He added that some negative effects of growth need to be addressed, including traffic congestion.

“I hear pretty frequently about the traffic. I hear pretty regularly that people don’t want to grow, and I wish we weren’t growing as rapidly as we are, but at this point, we need to embrace it and try to address it as best we can,” he said. “I don’t feel negatively about the growth, but I feel really positive that we need to be involved to try to diversify the growth and give our people some amenities.”

This article has been updated with additional results and comments from Mayor John Gates.

Christopher Wood
Christopher Wood is editor and publisher of BizWest, a regional business journal covering Boulder, Broomfield, Larimer and Weld counties. Wood co-founded the Northern Colorado Business Report in 1995 and served as publisher of the Boulder County Business Report until the two publications were merged to form BizWest in 2014. From 1990 to 1995, Wood served as reporter and managing editor of the Denver Business Journal. He is a Marine Corps veteran and a graduate of the University of Colorado Boulder. He has won numerous awards from the Colorado Press Association, Society of Professional Journalists and the Alliance of Area Business Publishers.
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