West Augusta residents want to decide who serves as interim commissioner

West Augusta residents want to decide who serves as interim commissioner

AUGUSTA, GA (WFXG) - Sonny Pittman, president of the West Augusta Alliance, said their voice isn't being heard by the commission in selecting a new representative for district 7.

"We haven't had any input into the process. The citizens of West Augusta have totally been left out of the process," Pittman said. "There's been no real process. It's just been one commissioner wants this person; one commissioner wants that person; and what we want is the ability to sit down with them as a community, as part of the community, as tax payers and say this is what we want."

The empty seat was vacated by Donnie Smith who resigned amid an investigation by Georgia State Patrol, which claims he violated several policies in that role.

Pittman and the alliance met Monday night to offer their suggestions on how the commission should proceed.

"What we want to do is hold a public hearing," Pittman started, "have the commissioners come and hear the people of west Augusta and what our voice is."

Pittman also thinks the person serving in the interim should not be the person that will run during the special election in March.

"That selectee should not be someone who is running," Pittman said. "Simply because if you appoint someone as a commissioner, or anoint them, you give them about a 25 to 30 percent head start at the polls. They'll have a duel focus. They'll be kind of half and half. They'll be tending to our business and they'll be out trying to campaign."

Pittman said they plan to take all those concerns to the next commissioner meeting.

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