Augusta mayor, 3 commissioners bid farewell at meeting

Published: Dec. 6, 2022 at 3:57 PM EST
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - Hardie Davis bid an emotional farewell Tuesday as he attended his last Augusta Commission meeting as mayor.

Davis wiped away tears after giving a speech before the chamber on his eight years of service.

His mom, dad, siblings, and niece were also there.

“We’re here to do the people’s business, for some of us one last time,” said Davis.

Also saying goodbye were outgoing Commissioners John Clarke, Dennis Williams, and Ben Hasan.

“Over the past two years, I’ve been particularly moved by our community working together to ensure public health during still present challenges with COVID,” he said.

Garnett Johnson is the incoming mayor to succeed Davis, who couldn’t run for re-election due to term limits.

Also at the commission meeting, commissioners approved an amended plan to allow new adult entertainment businesses in certain areas after moving forward with a draft ordinance last week.

Davis asked the commission for $500,000 in American Rescue Plan funds for libraries.

Commissioners Sean Frantom and Alvin Mason called out Davis for a last-second motion, saying it should’ve been brought up in committee. Frantom said items for mental health could use money more.

Hasan said: “I do agree in supporting it in some form or fashion. However, I think the problem we have, is that we’re just recycling money.”

Frantom said: “I don’t know if this is the right way to do it. I feel like we should’ve had this conversation in committee.”

Commissioner Bobby Williams addressed mental health by asking for $25,000 for mental health on top of the motion.

The proposal was approved 6-4.

We caught up with the mayor to ask if this motion was related to his violence reduction plan.

We asked if this motion is the last part of the violence reduction plan he mentioned in September.

Davis: “It’s all been happening and unfolding right around you. You missed it.”

News 12 NBC 26 Craig Allision: “Missed it? We’ve tried to reach out to you...”

Davis: “The library is just another quality-of-life standpoint.”