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Long-time Papillion mayor to face first female opponent to run for position in 40 years

Posted: 8:22 AM, Nov 05, 2018
Updated: 2018-11-05 14:43:28Z

The city of Papillion could have it's first female mayor this year as voters will choose between Autumn Burns and incumbent David Black. 

"I love teaching people about how they can get involved in the community," Burns said. 

Burns is a 12-year Papillion resident. She tells us she decided to run for mayor after a city council seat run fell through, because she was redistricted. 

Burns says she wants to help focus on bringing people into the city from out of state, as well as affordable housing. 

"I'm nervous because I don't think a lot of families are going to be able to get their start in Papillion unless they are wealthy," She said. 

Burns says being a single mother gives her a unique outlook on Papillion's future. 

"We are not a suburb for Omaha, for wealthy people to move to, we are a city that has all different walks of life in it and I don't want to see certain populations get left behind," Burns said. 

She also says she's fiscally conservative. Burns says her background includes working with nonprofits, and grant writing. 

"I will be a mayor that will be very transparent on where your tax dollars are going if there's areas that we can reduce waste ... if there's areas that we need to put some dollars into," She said. 

Mayor David Black says his experience speaks for itself. 

"I'm born and raised here so sometimes I think you don't appreciate what you have, but this is an area that a lot of people move to," Black said. 

Black says he's focused on continuing the city's growth trend. 

"[Papillion is ] one of the fastest growing places in the state of Nebraska ... and because of that growth [and] new development, road infrastructure, how you take care of the new roads but also don't forget about the old .. and then as you grow how do you not lose the small town feel," Black said. 

He tells us downtown development projects will help keep the small-town feel alive. 

Black was appointed mayor in 2009, being re-elected in 2010 and 2014. Now, Black says he's hoping to be a part of what's to come in the next 4 years, like the city's new 48 million dollar community center. 

"Papillion's results of listening to the people actually came out as an anomaly of how much people appreciate this place," Black said. We just accepted a national award called Voice of the People." 

The polls open at 8 a.m.