Leading with the truth

We commend District 4 Commissioner Rob Williamson on his latest video. It is powerful, emotional and he speaks publicly on a very private issue – addiction. He has never made a secret of his alcohol addiction. And now he has disclosed he was “using” as well. We applaud his recovery and his claim of 10 years of sobriety.

We wonder – why release this video now? And what does it have to do with the re-election? Should we now vote for him because he has overcome the evils of addiction? Once again, this video shows it is all about Rob. Look at me…look what I have been through…I need your pity vote.

We are definitely not beating up on a man in recovery. It just has no place here…he nearly drowned, he lived in all 67 counties in the state, he went hungry as a child, cancer survivor, recovering addict. What next?! Is this how he wants to earn his votes? Maybe – because you cannot stand on the issues.

Earlier he released a graphic outlining why it is important for him to travel to Tallahassee and Washington, D.C. because he says the money decisions aren’t made in Milton. So, we wanted to take a closer look at the projects he listed on the graphic:

$150,000 for Miracle League. This was Lane Lynchard’s project. In the May 10 regular meeting of the Board of Commissioners, Lynchard said last summer he brought the idea to the board and the board was fully engaged and behind the project and made it a priority. Lynchard further said he met with Representative Jayer Williamson and Senator Doug Broxson about the project and they were “both excited about the project.” He thanked them for working with him and the Board to make this project a reality. May 10, 2018, minutes of regular meeting

$650,000 for a stormwater drainage project in Holley by the Sea: The county’s end of the bargain was $850,000 and the $650,000 came from a push from Senator Broxson. Thank you Senator Broxson. Williamson also pulled a $6.8 million project for Tom King Bayou East Branch Cut because it tipped the scales in district 4 and wasn’t fair to the other districts. This would have fixed one of the biggest priorities on the Baskerville Donovan study list. So really, Williamson is in the negative by $6.3 million.

$8 million for beach restoration: That funding came from the state and other sources at a request from THE BOARD, not Williamson. He would like to think he is the only member of the board but at that important juncture in time, Commissioner Bob Cole was the one that pushed for the MSBU for lease holders to go away and said “the county should pick up the bill.” (minutes, MSBU Public Hearing, Aug. 23, 2016)

$1,000,000 for I-10 Industrial Park improvements: This was on the legislative priority list in 2016 that the entire BOARD discussed and submitted to our legislature. Again – thank you legislators! Why must everything come back to Williamson – share the credit – and the blame!

The truth is – he travels to Tallahassee and Washington D.C. to make himself feel more important. Perhaps he is addicted to the state and national political scene. He perhaps travels to further his own political career. And with all the traveling he is doing, the other commissioners are left with no budget.

The truth is – he released the video of his private self to gain your sympathy. He released the video to tug at the heart strings. Why else? We don’t vote on a candidate’s struggles or challenges no matter what. We vote on their strengths and qualifications.

Vote for the candidate with the strength and integrity to do what is right for Santa Rosa County.

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