This is an important week for Liberty County’s municipalities.
Qualifying for the Nov. 6 city elections began Monday.
Residents of Allenhurst, Gum Branch, Hinesville, Riceboro and Walthourville, who want to serve in public office, have until Friday afternoon to file official notices of candidacy with the Liberty County Registrar’s Office.
Flemington and Midway are the only municipalities in Liberty County that are not having elections this year.
So that’s why it’s important to the candidates. What makes this week important to you?
Municipal elections only take place every four years. That means whoever is elected to mayor and city council will represent their constituents for roughly 1,460 days and help determine the short- and long-term future of their communities.
With these elected roles come great responsibilities. After all, they will address such issues as growth, planning and zoning, the economy, taxes, infrastructure and recreation.
Get to know the candidates
That’s why knowing the candidates, their stance on these issues and their qualifications is key — and this week offers your first glimpse at the slate of contenders.
At the end of the week, take a good look at the list of people who have qualified and consider these points when choosing your favorite candidates.
First, an elected leader must have time to commit to the office he or she holds. Attendance at city meetings and functions may seem like a given, but not all elected leaders adhere to that basic — but essential — component of the job. Sometimes, they have demanding careers and hope to squeeze the city’s business into their hectic schedules. Not good. Be sure your candidate has the time to devote to public service. There are a lot of people depending on it.
Communication is vital. Is your candidate willing to listen to constituents and keep the public informed about pertinent issues? Is he or she truthful? Can he or she be contacted easily?
Is your candidate a leader? Does he or she have a vision for the future, and the personality and persistence to see it through?
Elected leaders must have high-ethical standards and be above reproach when it comes to their activities in office. They are not to show favoritism.
Does your candidate have respect for taxpayer money? Will he or she spend your money wisely?
Give it a try
Of course, there are those people who have no faith in any “political candidate.” If you fall into that category, consider seeking office yourself. You have until Friday to qualify.
The registrar’s office is at 102 S. Commerce St. in Hinesville.
For more information, call 876-3310.
— Sonya Campbell-Kurth