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Urbana Mayor Marlin confirms she won’t seek third term

Urbana Mayor Diane Marlin

URBANA – Democrat Diane Marlin is confirming what she has been talking about for more than a year: she’ll step down as Urbana mayor when her current term ends next spring.

“After 8 years on City Council and 8 years as mayor, 16 in city government, is a good long run,” Marlin said in an interview with Illinois Public Media. “And I’m proud of all we’ve accomplished. I’ve informally shared that I won’t be seeking reelection, so I guess this is now formally.”

Marlin was first elected mayor of Urbana in 2017, defeating incumbent mayor Laurel Prussing in the Democratic primary, and Republican Rex Bradford in the general election. She handily beat two primary challengers in 2021 and faced no opposition in the general election that sent her to a second term.

Under her administration, Marlin says Urbana’s city government has restored its financial health, launched new infrastructure projects and stimulated housing construction with a tax incentive program. And she says city government has improved its relationships with several community sectors.

“I think we’ve repaired a lot of relationships that sort of frayed over the years,” said Marlin.

In December 2022 DeShawn Williams, chief deputy in the Champaign County treasurer’s office, became the first candidate to announce he would run for Urbana mayor in 2025. At that time, Marlin was already being quoted in news reports as saying she “probably” would not seek a second term.

But the Urbana voters will not choose a new mayor until the spring of next year. The 2025 Illinois municipal election will take place April 1. The primary election, if needed, will be held February 25. Urbana’s city clerk and all seven seats on the city council will also be up for election at that time.

Picture of Jim Meadows

Jim Meadows

Jim Meadows has been covering local news for WILL Radio since 2000, with occasional periods as local host for Morning Edition and All Things Considered and a stint hosting WILL's old Focus talk show. He was previously a reporter at public radio station WCBU in Peoria.

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Severe storms possible Thursday evening and overnight

From the National Weather Service in Central Illinois: A line of t’storms will affect the area late Thursday afternoon into the overnight hours. Some severe storms are in the forecast, with damaging wind gusts and large hail. Stay weather aware and be ready to take shelter when storms approach.