Local City To File Suit Against Former Mayoral Candidate

Temple Ga -- A local city intends to take legal action against a man who was forced to defend his qualifications to run for mayor.

In 2017, the qualifications for mayoral candidate Gerald Powell were challenged by the city...and a hearing was set by the county's elections office to decide if his name would be allowed on the ballot for the Temple mayoral race. The court ultimately ruled that he did not qualify. The city coulkd now pursue reimbursement of attorney's fees from Powell for the challenge and appeal.

In a special called meeting last week the council voted three to one to pursue this action. Councilman Richard Bracknell abstained. Councilman Todd Rothwell, the sole nay, believes this is a senseless pursuit.

Rothwell spoke with WLBB radio about the pending suit, "Pursuing these attorney's fees is frivolous and a very loud statement to keep out of our government. The city is responsible to host our very own elections which includes our qualifying process. To me and I hope to whatever judge hears this case, these fees are just the cost of doing business that the city incurs by holding elections."

Newly elected Council Member Terron Bivens said she voted in favor of seeking the reimbursement as a way to protect tax payers money, "What we are supposed to be doing is looking out for the best interest of the tax payer money. I'm not going after anybody but when it comes to tax payer money, they did put me up here to vote."

Details of this legal action, such as amount and timeline, were discussed in a closed door executive session and therefore not public knowledge.

The challenge to Powell's qualification came from documents showing that he had been convicted of felony possession of marijuana in 1992.

During the hearing in front of the election board, Powell and his attorney claimed that the felony charge was reduced to a misdemeanor. The elections board cited state-released documents in accepting the charge was a felony.
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Topics : Politics