Quitman Co. citizens trying to oust commission chairman

By Lindsey Connell - bio | email | Twitter

QUITMAN COUNTY, GA (WTVM) -  Cheryl Butler says she's fed up with the way Quitman County is being run. Butler and other citizens are trying to get rid of Richard Morris, the man at the head of the County Commission.

"I know things are not supposed to be run like this. There's been so many illegal things going on that we finally all got to together and decided to come up with grounds for a recall," Butler said.

Perhaps their biggest gripe is the county commission's control over how elected officials can spend their money, particularly the Quitman County Sheriff's Office.

Morris, chairman since 2008, says he has simply been doing his job, trying to maintain a balanced albeit strained budget.

"We're just maintaining policies that we established way before I became commissioner. This has been the way it's always worked. We've never had any constitutional officers that have had any problems. We never denied the sheriff anything until he over spent his budget last year," he told WTVM.

Tensions reached a boiling point when Morris asked a grand jury to look into actions of the Sheriff's Office following a small scale riot in downtown Georgetown.

"That's part of being a politician. I guess that's the cross we bear. There's always going to be some agitated folks out there," Morris said.

"They have a charter done by the assembly of the state of Georgia and they don't want to follow it. That's the lawlessness here. The law gets in their way. The citizens of this community deserve a fair and honest Board of Commissioners and Chairman," Butler added.

This matter is not resolved yet.

The lawyer for the petitioners must submit paperwork to a Quitman County Superior Court Judge by May 1st.

Then the county attorney has until May 15th to respond.

After that, the judge will rule whether or not the allegations are true.

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