August 18, 2013

Qualifying for city elections starts soon

Many people don’t pay much attention to city elections. The percentage of registered voters turning out for these races rarely breaks the single digits. And too often, few candidates bother to run. Over the last decade or so, there have been several years when some local cities didn’t even have to hold an election because only one candidate qualified for each office that was up for grabs.

Yes, the federal deficit and health care and Iraq and Afghanistan are important and vital issues and we understand why people care so much about them.

But local government likely plays a bigger role in our lives than the state or federal governments. We are certainly more likely to interact with local government that the state or federal governments.

When someone calls the police to report a robbery or an assault or a drunken driver weaving down the road, a local sheriff’s deputy or police officer will almost certainly be the one who responds.

If you want to get a build a house, rezone some property or get a business license, you’ll have to talk to someone from your local government.

The vast majority of the property taxes we pay go to local governments, as do a significant chunk of the sales taxes collected locally.

Voters in cities across Georgia will go to the polls in November to choose mayors and city council members. And in those cities — such as Dalton — that have their own school systems, they’ll select school board members.

Qualification for those races takes place during the last week of August. If you’ve got an interest in local issues, live inside one of our local cities and have the time and dedication, you might think about running for one of those council or school board seats. If you know someone you think would make a great council or school board member, you might encourage them to run.

Voters deserve a choice every time they go to the polls. We hope that many qualified men and women will step up in a couple of weeks to offer them that choice in this year’s city elections.


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  • Tax holiday weekend is perfect time to shop

    August means children across the state are headed back to school, and for parents that means it’s time to buy new shoes and clothes for children who have outgrown their old ones. It means it’s time to buy new school supplies, and it may even mean it’s time to get a child a new computer to do their school work.

    July 30, 2014

  • "We’ve had a great ride"

    For 60 years, the Green Spot has been a part of Dalton. It survived long after most other locally owned grocery stores in the area had folded to competition from big chain grocery stores and to big box super stores.

    July 29, 2014

  • Charles Oliver: Traveler from a district in Columbia?

    Jim Gray was traveling out of Orlando International Airport when a Transportation Security Administration officer tried to stop him from boarding his plane.

    July 29, 2014

  • Letter: Children are not the enemy

    We recently read somewhere that our country is at war, not with another nation but with one another.

    July 29, 2014

  • Ensuring the joy of reading

    They’re little, they’re libraries, and best of all, they’re free.

    July 28, 2014

  • Move carefully, but soon

    No one intended for it to happen. No one had any bad motives.
    But during a period of 40 years or more, quite a few people didn’t do enough planning, didn’t have enough foresight to see what all of the development in Dalton would do.

    July 27, 2014

  • Local school systems must bear costs of federal immigration failure

    No word. No warning. Little help.
    That’s what Dalton Public Schools officials received from the federal government when it dropped 30 Central American students into local classrooms last school year.

    July 26, 2014

  • Sacrifices worth honoring

    Members of the Dalton City Council were recently approached by representatives of the local chapter of the Military Order of the Purple Heart with a request to declare Dalton a Purple Heart City. Council members indicated they will approve the request.

    July 24, 2014

  • We must do better

    The numbers tell a sad tale.
    Registered voters: 36,843.
    Cards cast: 5,307.
    That means the turnout for Tuesday’s runoffs in Whitfield County was a measly 14.4 percent, according to unofficial results from the Whitfield County elections office.

    July 23, 2014

  • Letter: Control immigration

    Thousands are starting to pour into our country, and things are getting personal. Why would we end up the bad guys if we turn away children who aren’t ours? How does it make us better people to let one man steal from our children and stand by and do nothing?

    July 23, 2014