A former Rincon City Council member will be running for a seat on the Effingham County Board of Commissioners.
Michael King will announce his candidacy for the District 2 post Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. in front of Guyton City Hall.
“I’ve thought about it off and on for the past year or so,” King said of the running for the seat currently held by Myra Lewis. “I’ve really concentrated on it and have had people approach me about my interest in doing so in the last few months.
“My desire is to give back to the community I grew up in and serve the people and look out for their best interests,” he added. “I think, sometimes, elected officials can lose sight of that. I think we’re facing some challenging economic times and I think we need to better address how we spend the taxpayers’ dollars.”
King also had concerns about the property assessments in the county and the impacts those have on residents, especially as many are out of work.
“While property values are decreasing, the property assessments done by the county are increasing. It seems like the tax burden on the average person in Effingham County keeps going up,” he said. “We need to see where our priorities should be and where we’re spending the money we do have, because we’re going to have less and less of it in the years to come.”
King is a graduate of Effingham County High School and of Georgia Southern University, where he obtained a master’s in public administration. He is a vice president of VNS Corporation, a building materials supply company with operations in Rincon. He and his wife Jennifer have four children.
A 1999 graduate of Leadership Effingham, King is deacon chairman of New Providence Baptist Church and serves on the executive board of the Coastal Workforce Investment Board.
He also said Effingham is not immune from a national groundswell seeking a new direction.
“It’s an overall atmosphere or environment in our county that people want to see a change in leadership,” King said. “They’re looking for some leadership. We’re experiencing the same kind of mood the rest of the country is in. People have gotten more engaged and are paying more attention to things.”
According to King, his time on the Rincon City Council also can help the commissioners in their talks with the three municipalities. He noted the relationship between the county and the cities has not always been good.
“Part of what I can bring to the table is I understand the mindset and the priorities of the municipalities and how they are looking at things,” he said. “A citizen of a municipality is also a citizen of the county. Sometimes we draw lines that don’t necessarily need to be there in order to get things done. I hope some of that will help with communication. Maybe we can improve our relationships between the county and municipalities and the other entities.”
The county will have to form partnerships both inside the county lines and across the lines to get some things done, such as the Effingham Parkway, King said.
“I think we’re going to be forced to, as a community, to think outside the box when it comes to funding things that need to be done,” he said. “Everyone knows there’s not any money for the Effingham Parkway. We’ve got to be able to come together as a community and come up with some alternate ways to get some things done. We need to be open to doing that.”