WARNER ROBINS, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Candidates on the mayoral campaign trail in Warner Robins met face-to-face to discuss the issues on Tuesday night.
In the first forum sponsored by Robins Regional Chamber of Commerce, the six hopefuls were handed a question and an opportunity to set the stage for this year's campaigning. Nearly 150 of spectators, dozens of them wearing shirts supporting particular candidates, packed the auditorium of Central Georgia Technical College to listen to the issues.
Former Warner Robins city council member Mike Brashear was asked about transit systems. A service, he admits the city needs, but can't afford at this time.
"For us to go and purchase buses, to hire drivers and to provide maintenance capabilities to those buses is just not within our economic capabilities," he said.
Robins Air Force Base employee Chuck Chalk talked about the importance of creating a vision for the community.
"What does the city of Warner Robins government need to be so that we can move forward and start setting goals based on that vision," Chalk said.
Warner Robins city council member Daron Lee discussed his expertise on building meaningful relationships.
"Together we can do so much in this region with Centerville, Perry, as well as Warner Robins," Lee said.
When it came to Joe Musselwhite, former city public works director, local businesses were a priority.
"The city already does a pretty good job at that now," Musselwhite said, "we will certainly support anyway we can, we always have and will."
Former firefighter Randy Toms was all about transparency. His motto: "communication, cooperation and collaboration."
"The biggest thing we got to do is realize that we are all after the same goal," he said.
Retired educator Eva Folse wanted to be a good face for the town, saying the city needs a change.
"The international city should have a mayor who speaks another language," Folse said.
Each candidate offered a unique platform and priorities but there was one similarity between them all: Robins Air Force Base. During the forum everyone mentioned the need to build more partnerships and protect the base and its jobs.