News 12 at 6 o'clock, August 23, 2007
Augusta, GA---Some changes are coming to the Augusta Commission. Election season is just around the corner and at least two Commission seats are open.
Fran Stewart is a community activist who is no stranger to the Commission. She's been going for over 20 years. In that time she says she has seen lots of people come and go. "I've seen a lot of changes and I have hope for the future. You know, I think the next five years you are going to see a whole different CSRA."
The qualifying period for the Augusta Commission Districts 2, 4, 6, 8, and 10 opens Monday and ends Friday. Already the list of candidates is beginning to grow. Mrs. Stewart says, "I hope it's someone whose been going to commission...you know that really feels the heartbeat of the community, and I feel like they need to be a team player."
It's a sentiment echoed from local people all the way to the mayor's office. Mayor Copenhaver says, "Really we need to focus on if there is disagreement that's fine, but focus on disagreeing without being disagreeable is my personal opinion, and working together as a team."
Commissioners Marion Williams and Andy Cheek can't run again because of term limits. Commissioners Bernard Harper, Jimmy Smith, and Don Grantham are all up for re-election. Smith and Harper are running uncontested so far. But Grantham may have at least one contender. This leaves half the commission seats up for grabs.
Mayor Copenhaver says, "We need people looking at the big picture and not just at their district."
Outgoing Commissioner Marion Williams says he won't soon forget his time in office. "I didn't please a lot of people and I wasn't trying to please them. I was trying to bring some awareness to what's going on. I think the city of Augusta is a great city. I am glad I was able to serve for this little short time."
As for Mrs. Stewart, she says, "The next one's that come in, I pray that they will be an informed electorate, and anybody that puts their hat in the ring I admire them."