Macon Mayor Robert Reichert cites a busy schedule and previous debates as his reasons for declining to debate his mayoral opponent C.Jack Ellis on live television.

Last week, 13WMAZ invited Reichert to participate in a live debate with Ellis in the station's studio. Ellis accepted and expressed dismay over Reichert's refusal.

At the time, the Reichert campsaid an email response would be coming from Reichert. That response arrived Friday night.

"I regret the delay in responding, but we have been running a busy schedule between the campaign and mayor's office obligations. I told my campaign manager that we did not consider a debate with Jack Ellis to be either productive or necessary. We have spent more than 20 hours in forums and debates with Mr. Ellis this year alone, feel there is nothing to be added by additional debate. However, we are scheduled to appear with Mr. Ellis in two forums where interested parties can join us to ask specific questions they want answered.

"That, we feel, is sufficent," Reichert said in his delayed email.

One of the forums Reichert mentioned is an appearance before the neighborhood association at Lake Wildwood. The other is with the Macon Ministerial Association.

Reichert and Ellis meet in the Oct. 15 runoff election. The winner becomes the mayor of the first Macon Bibb consolidated government.

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