Friday, October 24, 2008

H’COLA’s Final Political Forum

There was no October surprise as undecided voters living in the North side community of Apalachicola aka “The Hill” attended a political forum Thursday night hosted by the Hillside Coalition of Laborers for Apalachicola (H’COLA).

The forum was a series of two hosted by the group over the past three months. On July 31, H’COLA hosted a similar forum aimed at educating Hillside voters concerning the issues facing them in the 2008 primaries elections.

On hand last night and eager to share their platforms with the near capacity crowd, were candidates running for Franklin County Sheriff, Property Appraiser, and Superintendent of Public Schools. As with the July forum, David Walker, Pastor of the Covenant Word Christian Center moderated the event.

With eleven days left until the General Election, the candidates made no missteps or gaffes. Some read from prepared text while others stuck to their campaign rhetoric heard over the course of this election.

Up first were the two candidates vying for the office of Sheriff, Bruce Barnes (Rep), and his opponent Skip Shiver (Dem). The winner of the race will serve a four-year term and receive an annually base salary of $99,307.

Candidates for Sheriff discussing Community Policing Programs.

The two candidates seeking the office of Property Appraiser, Incumbent Doris Pendleton (Dem) and Richard Harper (Rep) were up next. The winner here will advance to become the next Franklin County Property Appraiser and earn an annual base salary of $90,721.

Candidates for Property Appraiser discussing Duties of the Office.

Considered by many to be the most important race in Franklin County this political season, the three candidates running for the office of Superintendent of Public Schools, Denise Butler (Rep), Nina Marks (Dem) and Will Kendrick (NPA) took center stage to answer a wide range of questions from the audience. The winner of this contest will enjoy but certainly earn the annual base salary of $90,721.

Candidates for School Superintendent making their Opening & Closing remarks.

Footage and photos by Gail D. Johnson