NewsCovering Kentucky


Jim Gray Reflects On Tenure As Mayor Of Lexington

Posted at 7:23 PM, Jan 15, 2019
and last updated 2019-01-15 19:23:44-05

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Nobody ever said that running the city would be easy. That’s something now former Lexington Mayor Jim Gray learned the first day on the job, eight years ago.

The title of Lexington mayor came with a long “to do” list and a $20 million budget deficit.

Gray moved his office from the 12th floor to the first, letting the public see the business of running a city, and he fought to renovate the old, dilapidated courthouse downtown.

Not every project was efficient. CentrePointe, now called City Center, only showed real progress near the end of Gray’s second term.

Gray will also be remembered for having the Confederate monuments to John Hunt Morgan and John C. Breckinridge moved from downtown to the cemetery where the men are buried.

He announced this decision the day after a woman was killed in Charlottesville, N.C., during a rally involving white supremacists. Some say Gray paid for the decision in his unsuccessful bid for Congress, but he say that he has no regrets about the decision.

“It just wasn’t right to have them on same grounds where slaves were sold,” said Gray. “It was the right thing to do. The voices in society told me I had to act.”

LEX 18’s Nancy Cox sat down with Gray to talk about his time as Lexington mayor and what the future has in store.

You can watch the interview in the videos below: