LAKELAND - Lakeland City Commissioner Glenn Higgins is running for re-election to a second term.

Higgins, 71, is unchallenged so far in his bid to keep the Northeast District seat on the commission.

The city election will be Nov. 6, with Higgins' seat, the Northwest District seat and an at-large seat up for election.

Commissioner Gow Fields has announced for re-election for his Northeast District seat and has not drawn an opponent yet. Commissioner Dean Boring isn't running for re-election to the at-large seat and five candidates have already filed for the seat.

"I want another term because the individuals on the commission are great to work with and we work in harmony,'' Higgins said. "And it is so good to see all the volunteers in the chamber, the Lakeland Economic Development Council, the LDDA (Lakeland Downtown Development Authority) and Downtown Lakeland."

Said Higgins: "One thing I enjoy the most is working behind the scenes to help citizens with their problems, but we do have challenges and that is why I am running again,'' Higgins said.

He said that the biggest problem could be before the election, when the Florida Legislature meets in June to consider cutting the property taxes.

Property taxes are what pay for local government operations.

"We have heard so many different proposals on what they are going to do with property taxes and we are facing major projects that have to be attended to,'' Higgins said. "Lakeland has a $37 million deficit in roads. Phase one of the Parks and Recreation project to meet our needs over the next 10 years will be $54 million and we are under a federal Clean Water Act mandate passed down by the state to clean up our lakes, which will cost around $215 million. And we are not going to be raising the (property tax rate), that's for sure."

A retired Army officer, high school ROTC officer and basketball coach, Higgins is the first Lakeland resident living north of Interstate 4 to be elected to the City Commission.

He and wife, Sandra, have two adult sons.

Higgins will have served five years at the end of his first term in January. Commissioners added another year to their four-year terms to accommodate a new date for municipal elec-tions sought by Polk County Supervisor of Elections Lori Edwards.

Lakeland city commissioners are paid $15,296 a year and have an $1,800 spending allowance.

Political Editor Bill Rufty can be reached at bill.rufty@directgates.com or 802-7523.