What in the world is going on with naming a replacement fo District 7′s Commission seat? It has now been over 2 weeks since Donnie Smith, District 7′s Commissioner, resigned from his seat. It only took a week for the Commission to appoint a replacement for Joe Jackson after he abruptly resigned last month. Yesterday the Augusta Chronicle ran an article on the likely replacements: Echols, Frantom, and Harris.
One has to wonder why there is, at least from the outside seems, a lack of urgency to appoint a commissioner for District 7. For those who follow the local government, it is fairly easy to guess as to why there was a rush to appoint the commission rushed to get Hasan aboard yet has no urgency to appoint a District 7 replacement.
As the Donnie Smith fiasco has unfolded, I began to think about the District 7 race between Smith and Echols two years ago. I am sure the majority if not all of Smith’s voters now wish they had voted for Echols. During his campaign, Echols pledged not to vote for any property tax increases.
Smith, on the other hand, recently voted for the tax hike, then retreated after the appararent outcry from District 7 residents. Presumably so Smith could save face with his district, Smith voted “no” in the final vote that increased the tax burden.
The vote on the tax increase ended in a 5-5 tie with the mayor casting the tie-breaking vote in favor of the tax increase. If any one of the 5 “no” voters had abstained, the tax increase would have failed. This tactic has been used repeatedly in the past.
Have any of the 5 “no” votes answered the question on why they didn’t abstain? The voters in those districts need to demand answers because their vote was basically a vote in facor of a tax increase.