Letter: A “NO” Holds County Back

I ran for this District 7 council seat two years ago to work toward making Fairfield County a more productive place for our citizens – good paying jobs, nice affordable homes and good places to eat and shop.

We have come a long way with 700 new jobs, $70+ million investment in our county and getting our unemployment down to 3% during these last 4 – 6 years. This is an exciting beginning.

Developing Exit 32 and building a wastewater plant are the next steps to keep us in the game.

But as this election approaches, those campaigning against our three county council incumbents seem to not want our citizens to have a better life.

The rallying cry right now is: ‘O horrors, the budget has increased 30% in the last 4 years!”

That’s right. It has. And that’s a good thing. It is not realistic that our budget won’t increase. Sure, we spent more money, we also brought in more money. Our county is in fine financial shape. Our last audit bears that out. Most of our budget increases went to improving public safety and health care for our citizens. That’s a good thing!

More important than an increased budget is that we have NOT raised property taxes.

I am not one that looks for recognition, but I just cannot sit back any longer and not say anything.  Fairfield County has not moved forward in the past, because there are those who cannot see past their noses to a bright future. For us to move forward we must build the wastewater treatment plant now. We will soon not have enough sewer capacity to bring in new companies. It’s that serious.

But for us to build the plant, we must vote YES on the Penny tax referendum. Anyone that tells you to vote NO, does not want progress. 

By design, much of the penny tax will be paid by outsiders who eat in our restaurants and stay overnight.

This wastewater treatment plant is not going to contaminate Cedar Creek. It is not the kind of system causing contamination in the Midlands. It is a new system that leaves effluent near drinking water quality. It is cleaner than the water is now in Cedar Creek.

If this referendum does not pass, we will be in a bad place. I do not want my property tax raised; nor do I want to see cuts. I want to see Fairfield flourish.

If the candidates running against the incumbents have a better plan, let them reveal it. So far, they have not. This council is doing a great job for the citizens. Please let them continue moving us forward.

I ask you to return Jimmy Ray Douglas, Bertha Goins and Chairman Neil Robinson to office for a better Fairfield.

Clarence Gilbert

County Councilman, District 7