With qualifying coming up quickly this month, candidates for two open city council seats have begun making themselves known.
Current council member Angie Smith has announced that she will be qualifying to run for reelection this November. Smith, 42, is currently serving her first term.
Smith said she is seeking reelection because she does not feel the work she is supposed to do in the city is finished yet.
“This is my home and I love it here and I’m not a politician I just want to do the work,” Smith said. “I just see a lot of potential for positive changes, some of it growth, but not necessarily growth- just changes to the good that need to be done here in the city and in the county.”
Some of the unfinished business Smith said she wants to see through includes the downtown revitalization project, main street park, the historic preservation commission and historic district.
She’s most passionate about the downtown revitalization and beautification of the city.
“We have got to do a beautification project, a streetscape, something,” she said. “Our local businesses here, I think, depend on what we do to bring people down here...to make this not a tourist destination but somewhere that our local people can come and live and hang out on a Friday or a Saturday or a Thursday. There’s a lot of traffic that comes through here, and we need to be capitalizing on that.”
Something Smith said she’s learned is that in government, things take much longer than the average person would expect.
“I’m more realistic about the time frame now that I’ve been in for a term,” she said. “It was extremely unrealistic for us to think that downtown revitalization would be completed in a year or two years, that kind of thing. There are more hands in the pot than you ever think about, more regulation and more hoops to jump through at a state level.”
Smith said she hopes the way she conducts city business is remembered more than the actual outcome.
“I would hope that people would say about me that regardless of the progress that’s made, that she did it honestly and fairly and worked hard without really wanting recognition,” Smith said. “I want my son and daughter to be as proud to be from here as I am.”
Smith currently manages property around Dawsonville for Fouts Properties and is part time music minister at Kilough Church by the Lake. She has also coached basketball and softball for parks and rec and basketball at the high school.
Smith has a bachelor’s degree in music education from what is now the University of North Georgia. She graduated in 1998 and taught music at Black’s Mill Elementary until 2005.
She is married to Scott and has two children, Ethan, 13, and Addison, 9.
I would hope that people would say about me that regardless of the progress that’s made, that she did it honestly and fairly and worked hard without really wanting recognition.Angie Smith
Council member Mike Sosebee’s seat is also up for election this year.
Sosebee said Tuesday he was planning on qualifying for reelection the first day it opens, Aug. 21.
“I just want to make sure that the things we have set forth happen, like the park,” he said. “That’s something the kids and the citizens could use. That’s the biggest priority, apart from being a good representative for the citizens.”
Sosebee held a seat on city council from 1980 to 2001. He was reelected for another term in 2004 and has served on the council since.
Qualifying for the municipal election will be held from Aug. 21-24. Anyone eligible to qualify can do so on those dates between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.
Council members on Jan. 9 voted to set the qualifying fee for a council seat at $180 for this year's election.
Council members are elected to four-year terms.
The current terms for council members Jason Power and Caleb Phillips, as well as Mayor James Grogan, will end Dec. 31, 2019.
The election will be held Nov. 7 at the county board of elections office, at 96 Academy Ave. in Dawsonville.
According to Glenda Ferguson, Dawson County Board of Elections chairwoman and election supervisor, there are currently 1,690 active registered voters in the city, with 151 registered inactive voters.