PORTERDALE -- Post 1 Councilman Robert Foxworth is seeking his third term on the City Council, even though his tenure on the council hasn't always been easy.
"I like making a difference in Porterdale, serving the people and serving the town," Foxworth said Thursday. "I think Porterdale has made tremendous progress over the past few years." He wants to help make sure that progress continues, he added.
Foxworth, 52, faces opposition from political newcomer Anita Rainey in the Nov. 8 municipal election.
Foxworth said that the economic climate is the biggest challenge facing the town right now, and he acknowledged that there's little that can be done in Porterdale to change that.
"It's just in a downward spiral right now," Foxworth said. "Porterdale isn't going to fix the economy. We just have to maintain what we have."
He added that he would like the city to be able to offer incentives in order to encourage more businesses to locate in Porterdale.
The biggest challenges for the City Council itself are cooperation and communication, said Foxworth. The Porterdale Council is known for personality conflicts and squabbles. Foxworth said much of that could be avoided if more council members received training in the operation of municipal government.
"If people have some kind of (Georgia Municipal Association) training, council members will know there are boundaries and lines they cannot cross," Foxworth said, referencing an incident earlier this year when the council voted to change the agenda of a called meeting over Foxworth's objections. The city charter does not allow the council to change the agenda of a called meeting.
Even though money is tight, Foxworth said GMA training is a key to smooth operation of the city and will help keep council members on the same page.
Foxworth added that he believes council members need to respect one another and help support each other's projects.
"We really need to work on communication and working together as a family instead of as separate individuals," Foxworth said.
That being said, Foxworth said he won't go along just to get along and won't support actions he knows are not appropriate.
"I am not a follower and I am not going to follow anybody down the wrong path," he said.
If he is re-elected, Foxworth said there are several projects he would like to see go forward, including SPOST-funded playgrounds, completion of the Yellow River trail and completion of renovations to the depot. He also pointed to projects he has supported in the past, including acquiring two speed limit radar signs for Main Street, helping to secure a K-9 program for the Porterdale Police Department, supporting an affordable health care plan for employees, and raising funds for the city's Fourth of July fireworks celebration.
Foxworth said his campaign efforts include walking the streets of Porterdale, going door-to-door, listening to residents' complaints and trying to lend a hand.