Posey labors to help secure Kingston's financial future
by Jason Lowrey
Dec 17, 2012 | 2833 views | 0 0 comments | 20 20 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Harold Posey serves on the Kingston City Council. SKIP BUTLER/The Daily Tribune News
Harold Posey serves on the Kingston City Council. SKIP BUTLER/The Daily Tribune News
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Name: Harold Posey

Age: 74

Occupation: Retired

City of Residence: Kingston

Family: Married to Elizabeth Ferguson, 2 Children, 5 Grandchildren

Education: BBA-Georgia State University, JD-Woodrow Wilson College of Law

After serving on the Kingston City Council for one year, Harold Posey has made one goal very clear — he wants to get Kingston’s financial house in order.

Posey has, at a number of council meetings, cited the need to revise the city’s 2012 budget and perform reviews of the city’s accounts. At a recent work session dedicated to Kingston’s 2013 budget, Posey provided the council with the most up-to-date financial information available so it would be able to make spending decisions for next year.

In another attempt to improve not only the city’s financial health, but also its overall operation, he has urged the council to hire a city administrator or city manager to help Mayor Ron Casey. During the Dec. 10 city council meeting, Posey made a motion calling for the revision of the city charter to include a city manager.

“The difficulty is where we have mayors elected every two years and it’s very difficult for one mayor to pick up where one mayor has left off. The city manager form of government would keep continuity through the years to develop programs, to implement them and to improve [them],” he said.

While the motion was never voted on, Posey said he looked forward to revising the city charter over the coming year to potentially include a city manager and any other changes that needed to be made.

What led you to run for a seat on the council?

A: My interest in governmental affairs and belief in the importance of community service.

What are some of the changes or improvements you would like to see incorporated into the budget?

A: The complexity of administering city government has changed to the point that we need a city administrator and I am hopeful that the council will be able to establish the position.

You were the sole council member to vote against the U.S. Department of Agriculture loan for the water system. Why did you not support accepting the loan?

A: I know that improvements in our infrastructure are needed, but I was not willing to obligate only the citizens of Kingston to a $1.3 million debt for 40 years on the uncertain future of a single well providing an adequate water supply to meet the terms of the loan. Also, our financial statements show that current water revenues are declining, which could mean rate increases in addition to those required by the loan. We should be able to maintain and upgrade our system with current water revenues and SPLOST. It would take longer, but it would avoid debt and the need to raise water rates on many of our citizens who cannot afford it.

What do you believe is the greatest problem facing Kingston?

A: Declining population.

What can Kingston do to restart economic growth and regain prosperity?

A: Apply for and hopefully receive sewerage grants.

What makes Kingston special?

A: Our small town atmosphere makes Kingston a great place to live.

If you had a dream job, what would it be?

A: Being a retired person my perspective has changed, but were I a young man again, I would choose a field requiring creativity such as an artist, a writer or a gourmet chef.

What would people be surprised to learn about you?

A: I am unassuming.

What is your greatest achievement?

A: Being a proud father of two wonderful daughters.

Do you have a personal motto?

A: Laugh a lot and be happy.

If you were to write your autobiography or memoirs, what would the title be?

A: From the Kingston Blue Hole to Berry and Beyond.