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Taxes big issue in District 4 commission race
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Both candidates for the only district seat on the Liberty County Commission that drewn opposition spoke to a political forum sponsored by the Liberty County Chamber of Commerce at Brewton Parker College last week.
Larry Boggs, a retired Army aviator with a degree in accounting, is challenging incumbent Pat Bowen, a tree surgeon who is also an Army veteran.
Boggs said he was running because he felt taxes were high and county "spending priorities need to be redirected."
He said areas like sanitation needed more funding, as did emergency services, which also needed staffing.
Bowen said a major concern of his was water —— "everybody wants it" —— and Liberty County would need to work carefully to insure a containing adequate supply.
The candidates were asked about their relationships with the other members of the commission.
Boggs said he had a good relationship with the commissioners, with whom he had dealt on a professional basis. He said he had attended many of their meetings, "but I don't know what goes on in the back room."
Bowen said the current commission was "a good board. We communicate."
In answer to a question about the economy, Bowen said that the commissioners had worked extensively with the Liberty County Development Authority, the chamber, AASU, Savannah Tech, the Work Ready program and others.
Boggs said work toward job growth should be undertaken with "caution and common sense."  He said he would like to know more about exactly where the development authority is going.
"Warehouses don't do much to improve the quality of life. And they may not always need another forklift operator."
Boggs named taxes as the hottest issue in the election, including provision of information to citizens on assessments, exemptions, appeals and collection of taxes. as well as prioritization of spending. "People have to be informed repeatedly." he said.
Bowen said growth was a hot issue, with people demanding smart growth policies. He defended the marina property purchase, saying, "The county should have done something like this 25 years ago. This is a good plan.
The winner of the Boggs-Bowen race will face no opposition in November.
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