City’s lack of candidates draws criticism
by Daniel Gaddy
Jul 20, 2012 | 3088 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
CARBON HILL — During the Carbon Hill City Council’s meeting on Thursday, several council members and residents expressed disappointment in the lack of candidates for the city’s municipal elections.

No candidate qualified for the District 6 council seat, and districts 3 and 5 saw only one person qualify for each spot.

The Carbon Hill City Council will have to appoint a resident to fill the position left open in District 6.

Council Member Scott Wright said someone in the community should volunteer for the open seat.

“Somebody in that district has got to have a little interest,” he said.

Wright said many residents have voiced their disapproval of the city’s leadership, and the open position represents a perfect opportunity for those people to take action.

James Johnson, the current District 6 council member, said he is not seeking re-election because he can no longer dedicate the time that the position deserves. Johnson said he now has two jobs and a daughter who will be a senior in high school, and he would like to spend more time with her.

“I’ve certainly enjoyed what I’ve been doing, and I wish I could continue,” he said.

Johnson also said that he hopes someone from District 6 will volunteer to fill the position.

Several members in the audience said the lack of candidates signifies a general deficit in the community’s civic engagement.

“People in Carbon Hill are the most complacent people in the world,” said resident Gene Matthieu.

Matthieu said he does not know what it will take to get the community to support the council and take an interest in the city’s government.

At Thursday’s meeting, the council unanimously approved Terry Mason as the District 3 council member and Chris Pschirer as the District 5 council member.

Pschirer currently serves on the council. Mason will take office on the first Monday in November. Jacque Roberson Allred, the current council member for District 3, is running for mayor of Carbon Hill in the upcoming election.