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November 10, 2013

Retired county sales tax officer seeks commission seat

CULLMAN — A former Cullman County sheriff’s deputy and retired county sales tax agent is throwing his hat into the race for Place 1 Associate Commissioner.

Kerry Watson, 51, said he’s running for the position currently held by incumbent Darrell Hicks because he wants to continue his career of public service and be a voice for the residents of Cullman County. He will be running as a Republican candidate in the June 2014 primary.

Watson joined the sheriff’s office in July 1988 as a deputy where he worked until he was transferred in 2004 to the county sales tax office. There he served as a compliance officer, making sure businesses paid their taxes and advising them on the proper paperwork and the process for filing their taxes. He retired from the position in September.

“Why am I running for the Cullman County Commission? My answer is simple: it has been a pleasure and I truly enjoy and love to serve and help the people of Cullman County,” Watson said. “I have done so for the past 25 years, and I see this as a way to continue serving, but in a different area.”

As he’s gotten out in the county and spoken with residents, the number one issue he’s hearing is the condition of county roads. Watson said if elected, his priority would be making sure that county roads aren’t just repaved and forgotten about.

“We got to keep up with the maintenance, cleaning out ditches and rights of way and grading the shoulders,” he said. “It’s like a house. You don’t just build a new house and say ‘Well, that’s it.’ You have to maintain it and take care of it.”

Watson said he would also like to work closely with all the county’s cities, towns and communities and their mayors, stating “because as they grow, we grow as a county.”

If elected, Watson said he will be very visible to his constituents by working out in the county, returning phone calls and making himself available to residents.

“I will be fair. I’ve always treated people how I wanted to be treated. I don’t have an agenda or any vendettas to settle. I want to be a voice for the people of Cullman County,” he said.

Qualifying for the 2014 election ends in April with the primary June 3, 2014 and the general election Nov. 4., 2014.

* Tiffeny Owens can be reached by email at towens@cullmantimes.com or by phone at 256-734-2131, ext. 135.

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