I, of all people, get the frustration we have with our government(s). We feel that no matter what we do, government always ends up doing what it always does, and it typically ends up costing us in the end. I get the distrust and frustration. It’s probably cliché for politicians, but it really is the reason I got into politics. I wanted people to know that if I said something, it was true, and that when you asked for help, I would try my best to get it done. I wanted to make sure that when government did something,
it was out in the open. And when you had something to say, you could say it and have your time to be heard. I wanted to make sure that our processes were not outdated, were free from red tape, and that they had a natural flow to them. I wanted you to know that we were helpful and responsive and were always trying to improve as time went on. There’s no secret that most of my ”friends” on Facebook are conservative thinkers. Facebook does a great job of getting like-minded folks together for their marketing purposes. Since taking office in 2011, I joined Facebook and started gathering a group of friends that would help with research and participation in getting things done for the conservative agenda and for the betterment of the people of Council District 6. So far we’ve gotten a great deal accomplished together:
- Got Spartanburg County out of the ICLEI and making the council aware of the dangers of Agenda 21
- Dissolved the Parks CommissionAdded a sunset to the Hospitality Tax
- Stopped an “across the board” 5% budget cut, and insisted that budget decisions be made item by item
- Worked to ensure that “at large” board appointments had a full vote, and were not hand picked
- Helped ensure that a citizens’ board, not county council, made the recommendation for any local gun ordinance
- Ensured that only those living in Spartanburg County could have a seat on our Planning Commission
- Invested my personal time and money to ensure that every Council Meeting was videoed and placed online
- Facebook Live-ed every Council Meeting so that those who couldn’t make it could watch in their underwear (didn’t even know that was a thing…)
- Sent out Mid-term Questionnaires concerning my performance
- Helped block several attempts at property tax increases
- Chaired the Corrective Action Committee that helped bring our Register of Dees office and Court records system into the 21st century
- Lowered the Parks tax rate
- Wrote a personal letter and signed a county letter to the Governor stating our opposition to Refugees locating in Spartanburg County.
- Attended every meeting of the Secretary of Homeland Security concerning refugee problem and putting the taped conversations online
- Received the ‘Friend of the Taxpayer’ award.
- Received the “Local Government Official” Award from the South Carolina Republican Party
- Made it possible for those who wanted to speak to Spartanburg County Council, to do so in every single meeting
- Cut money to outside agencies
- Ensured that we, as taxpayers, made the decision concerning a tax increase to build the new courthouse, instead of dictating a tax increase without public consent.
- Fought here and in Columbia and have confronted our local legislative delegation concerning the Local Government Fund where we have been double taxed for years
- Helped set up a system where you can contact me or the county directly to have road issues fixed by a second-to-none road maintenance crew – fixing problems such as potholes – many times within an hour of getting the request!I could go on with some of the things I’ve personally done for those of our district, and even some outside our district. The goal of all of this was to help eliminate some of the distrust people had in government, to show we did listen and could act, that we could actually get some good reform and implement great ideas, and that it’s not a futile exercise to deal with your County government. I believe we’ve made great strides in accomplishing these goals.
During my term on council, I have been given the opportunity to serve in several areas that enable me to make key decisions that result in real differences in the lives of those I serve. As the chairman of the Public Works committee I have the unique position of serving on the SPATS committee, overseeing and directing Federal highway and infrastructure dollars, and serving on the County Transportation Advisory committee, advising on projects funded by the state gas tax dollars. I also serve on the Council of Governments Board that directs federal dollars to areas of the Upstate to provide funding for economic development, community development, transportation, infrastructure development, aging services and workforce development. I was recently appointed by the Governor to sit on the State Workforce Development Board to oversee our workforce development state wide.
With all of the exciting things happening in our county, it is truly a pleasure to serve as your representative!This really is a unique time in Spartanburg, with lots of great opportunities and historic undertakings. I would be honored to continue to represent the citizens of Council District 6 for another term to ensure our strength, stability and direction moving forward. I ask for your prayers for wisdom and guidance as we, as a district, move forward in whatever direction God has for us.