Mayor Bill Hastings will not seek re-election

By George Slaughter, News Editor
Posted 12/27/21

Mayor Bill Hastings said Monday he will not seek a second term and retire when his term expires in May.

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Mayor Bill Hastings will not seek re-election

Posted

Mayor Bill Hastings said Monday he will not seek a second term and retire when his term expires in May.

“It was my intention to run for re-election and up until recently that was still my plan,” Hastings said in a statement. “However, several things have changed my personal life, all of which brought to my attention the value of slowing down, spending more time with my wife, our children, and our grandchildren.”

Hastings was elected mayor in May 2019, defeating incumbent Chuck Brawner. Hastings is the first mayor to serve a three-year term thanks to changes in the city charter adopted by voters.

Council Member-at-Large and Mayor Pro Tem Chris Harris said while he was happy that Hastings chose to spend more time with his family, he was also sad because it has been a pleasure working with Hastings.

"Bill Hastings, Mayor Brawner and previous Katy mayors have accomplished much, and we have more work ahead with flood control and improving city services," Harris said.

Ward B Council Member Gina Hicks said she was thankful for Hastings’s years of service.

“He has always operated in the best interest of others and I hope as he goes into this next season he has the opportunity to focus on himself and his family,” Hicks said. “He will be greatly missed, but I know he will be 100% devoted to finishing strong.”

Ward A Council Member Dan Smith reflected on Hastings's decades of service to Katy.

"I appreciate everything he has done and will continue to do through the rest of his term as mayor," Smith said. "It has been an honor to work with him and I am wishing him the best for the future."

Possible successors

The mayoral race is the only one on the city ballot this year. The filing deadline is Feb. 18.

The 2022 mayor’s race will be the first since 2017 in which the incumbent will not be seeking re-election. In 2017, then-incumbent Fabol Hughes retired after serving two two-year terms. Hughes’s retirement set the stage for then-Ward A Council Member and Mayor Pro Tem Brawner to seek the mayoralty. Brawner defeated former Ward A Council Member Hill Adams to win the job.

Of the five sitting council members, two—Harris and Ward A Council Member Janet Corte—are in their second terms in office. Both were re-elected last November.

The other Ward A council member, Smith, and the two Ward B council members, Hicks and Rory Robertson, are in their first terms.

Should any of them decide to seek the mayoralty, city law requires that they would resign their council positions when they file to run for mayor. Brawner did so when he sought the mayoralty in 2017.

Trading a badge for a gavel

Hastings will retire after several decades in public service. His Katy career began in 1986 when Pat Adams, the first Katy police chief, hired Hastings for the force.

Hastings worked his way up through the ranks, and in 2009, then-mayor Don Elder, Jr., appointed him as the city’s third police chief.

Hastings succeeded R.L. “Buddy,” Frazier, who had held the job from 1996-2009. Frazier died in 2018. As chief, Hastings served under mayors Elder, Hughes, and Brawner.

After Hastings retired from the police department in January 2019, but before he was elected mayor four months later, the city appointed Noe Diaz as police chief. Diaz continues to serve in that role today.

Hastings’s wife, Susan, is the crisis center director for Katy Christian Ministries.

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