By Linton Johnsonlinton@wsgcradio.com
With the 2018 general election just five weeks away, WSGC News continues our series of interviews with the four candidates for local offices in Elbert County. Today we hear from Lee Vaughn, the Republican candidate for chairman of the Elbert County Board of Commissioners. An interview with Vaughn’s opponent, Democrat Thomas Allgood, will be featured in tomorrow’s news broadcasts and Hometown Headlines.
Vaughn, a vice president with Northeast Georgia Bank and the current Elbert County commissioner from District 2, said two issues have come up most often on the campaign trail: the county’s support for Elbert Memorial Hospital and increasing employment opportunities in the county.
“The main issues I still see out there are the hospital and jobs. And the hospital, as you know, we voted to lower the millage support that we gave them versus last year, but still an ample amount. We’re still very committed to keeping the hospital engaged and open, and I’ve heard nothing but positive response to what we’ve done so far.
“Since I ran three years ago, my platform has been to create and promote jobs in Elbert County and to try to recruit some industry to come to Elbert County. We are talking about a spec building. We’re actually doing more than talking about it, we’re going to put out an RFP (request for proposals), try to get some bids and hopefully go vertical with a spec building sometime in 2019. I’ve gotten a lot of positive response on that as well. They community is ready for it. They understand the needs. Sometimes you have to spend a little money to get a return, and that’s what we’re going to do.”
Vaughn believes his experience in the public and private sectors give him the edge in the election for county chairman.
“Just because I’ve been on the commission board for the last almost four years now, I know what’s going on. I’m up to speed on everything. I think my banking background, my small-business background for the last 20-plus years gives me an advantage as well.”
Vaughn, who took more than two-thirds of the vote in this year’s primary to become the Republican nominee for chairman, was asked if he planned any changes in campaign strategy between now and Nov. 6.
“No, I hope to get out and knock on a few more doors and shake a few hands and reach a few voters that maybe I haven’t reached before. Other than that, we’re going to keep doing the same thing we’ve been doing.”
Voters will have the opportunity to hear directly from candidates for chairman of the Elbert County Board of Commissioners and the District 2 commissioner’s post at Elberton’s Rock Gym on Tuesday, Oct. 9, at a political forum co-sponsored by WSGC Radio and The Elberton Star.
Beginning at 6 p.m., the candidates will present their campaign platforms and answer questions submitted in advance by the public. To submit questions for the candidates, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com no later than noon Monday, Oct. 8.
The forum is open to the public and will be broadcast live on 105.3 WSGC, online at wsgcradio.com and on mobile devices with the Tune In radio app.
Tuesday, Oct. 9, is also the last day to register to vote or update voter registrations for the Nov. 6 general election. Early voting will begin Monday, Oct. 15.