Mayor ‘grateful’ for years of service to city

Published: Oct. 25, 2022 at 5:45 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 25, 2022 at 6:17 PM CDT
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HARDY, Ark. (KAIT) - Ernie Rose is counting down the days as mayor of Hardy.

Since assuming the mayoral post in 2019, Rose said he’s worked hard to improve water and sewer in the city limits along with some other projects designed to improve life in his community.

“Our main goal was to try and get hard surface roads on every residence in the city. We almost accomplished that. We got real close,” Rose said Tuesday. “We had to use some of the grants from the state aid program, which helped a lot. We then came in with a chip and seal company, and we got most of them finished, but there are just a few left.”

Hardy holds a special place in his heart and he wants to see all the good things continue.

“It’s been very interesting,” Rose said. “I would like to see it continue to prosper, and I really feel like it will.”

On Jan. 1, Ethan Barnes, a business owner and longtime resident, will take over as mayor.

He’s seen firsthand Rose’s hard work and is thankful for his service.

“Mayor Rose has done a tremendous job for the city of Hardy. And the Advertising and Promotion Committee here in Hardy, they’ve done a great job,” Barnes said. “I want to keep pushing forward Mayor Rose and what he’s done the last four years and continue to grow that for the city of Hardy, our taxpayers, and our citizens here.”

Barnes stressed that he would continue focusing on business growth and pushing for more tourists.

“Hardy has a lot of tourism. Our deep roots go back more than 100 years ago with Whapeton Hill and so many people coming to Hardy, Arkansas, off the Memphis railway. To have people continue to come to Hardy for the weekend, retire, or be full-time residents is tremendous,” Barnes said. “Tourism is a year-round factor here. There’s so many people that hunt, fish, and camp year-round. It’s not just a summer thing, but this beautiful spring river just draws people for hundreds and hundreds of miles.”

Rose, who served as a police officer in the 1980s, says he and his wife plan to travel when he steps down.