Freeman ready to bring his "new view" to life in East Moline

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EAST MOLINE, Ill. (KWQC) For the first time in 12 years, East Moline will have a new mayor.

John Thodos lost in the primary elections to former East Moline Police Chief Reggie Freeman.

Freeman received 59.9% of the vote compared to Thodos' 23.4%.

This will end Thodos' three term streak as mayor, which began in 2005.

Freeman spent the day after the elections taking down yard signs to celebrate his big win.

"It makes you feel good that the community believes in you," Freeman said.

He has nothing but good things to say about his running mates.

"I want to congratulate Mayor Thodos for his 12 years and I want to congratulate also Alderman Westbrook for their 12 years of service and I believe they did have their heart with the city and we just felt is was probably time for a new view," Freeman said.

He says he's now excited to get to work.

"We talked about bringing in businesses and revenues and that's what I'm going to meet with staff and I want their input to me what their feelings are and then I'll share with them what my feelings are," Freeman said.

Ralph Gay is a barber at Butch's Barber Shop in downtown East Moline.

He says he's hoping to see those kinds of changes in his area.

"I hope he revamps downtown here, we need more small businesses like a jewelry store, little small clothing stores, something that opens up all day," Gay said.

Don Hillman of East Moline believes the new mayor will get things done.

"You get a new person in there, they got new ideas, and that's what we're needing, I mean 12 years is long enough to see if somebody's going to do something in the past he's probably did stuff good, but it's time for somebody new," Hillman said.

Mayor Thodos told KWQC he wishes Freeman all the best and will always be there to help anyway he can.

Freeman says he will be meeting with Thodos over the next two months to prepare for the transition.

Rock Island County Chief Deputy County Clerk John Brown says Freeman will still appear on the ballot in April, but he will be unopposed, which means he will take over as mayor on May 1.