Qualifying ended Friday afternoon for the City of Franklin city council seat vacated by council member Shane Manders, Post #1. Five local residents will compete for the seat in the November 8th general election. Candidates are pictured below along with their occupation and their response to the question, “In your opinion, what is the most concerning issue faced by the City, and if elected how would you work to improve it”?
Election Superintendent Judge Joseph Bledsoe confirmed that the county would not take over the election for the city at this time. He stated that legal issues were involved in holding municipal elections, and more time was required before making a change. City Clerk Myra Braswell stated early voting begins on Monday, October 17th and runs through Friday, November 4th. during regular business hours. City Hall is open Monday – Friday from 8:00a.m. to 5:00p.m, except on Wednesday when the office is closed at noon. In addition, the office closes for lunch each day from 1:00p.m. – 2:00p.m. Applications are now available for absentee voting.
Question: “In your opinion, what is the most concerning issue faced by the City, and if elected how would you work to improve it?”
Charles Israel: Occupation: Detective with the City of Fairborn Police Department. Response: I believe the biggest issue right now is income revenue. Our sales tax has dropped and hearings are going on now to raise our property taxes to try and counterbalance that. It is my understanding that the city is still on budget but barely making it on budget. We need to look at sources of revenue. I’d like to find ways to attract businesses to increase the sales tax and create jobs here for people who don’t have the means to maybe commute to Carrollton, LaGrange, Roanoke, or Newnan and maybe even further. We need to find ways to attract businesses to the city.
Rodney Kay, Jr.
Occupation: Associate Superintendent with Heard County Schools. Response: I think the discernment right now of arewe wanting to grow, are we not wanting to grow. The other issue near and dear to my heart is our kids and looking for things and opportunities for them to have things to do here around our hometown. In terms of working to improve or fix it, its getting with the people that are able to fix it and sitting down and having conversations about it, bringing it to the forefront would be the first step. We would need to workwith our development authority to ensure positive growth for our community.
Occupation: Retired Respiratory Therapist of 45 years. Response: The most pressing issue for the city is we need to try and develop more business in the city so our youth who graduate from school can stay here and not have to move away to find a job. That is becoming a real problem. If elected, I would work with other council members and the Mayor, the Development Authority and the Chamber in doing all that we could to encourage businesses to come into the city. We may even look at the possibility of municipal bonds to help finance those types of citations. I feel that is the most pressing issue right now.
Occupation: Retired Housewife. Response: I would want to work with the council members and the citizens of Franklin. I think it is important to work with the council and the mayor.
Occupation: Branch Manager of Bank of the Ozarks (formerly Community & Southern Bank). Response: I think the most important thing facing our city is our downtown. I would love to see it with more businesses and more activity, so I think that would probably be my main focus, trying to get our downtown to where we have a place to where people can come in, shop and something to attract outsiders to come into our city. We would work along side with the development authority to get businesses here and build up our downtown to improve our income. I’m glad to live in the city and it would be a privilege to be a part of what I think would be greatness for our next generation.