Columbus City Councilman John House stepping down

Published: Apr. 25, 2023 at 4:52 PM EDT
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - Columbus City Councilor John House is stepping down from the district 10 at - large position during Tuesday night’s city council meeting...

We are told House will announce his departure from city council tonight.

He’s spent his adult life serving the country in the military... later moving back to Columbus to serve his neighbors.

He has this advice for the person who takes on the role: “Whoever takes my place, in my opinion, needs to get out there and see as many of the citizens of Columbus as they can, and also support the people who work for the city,” House told News Leader 9′s Ashlee Williams.

69-year-old John House: a Columbus native who has worn countless hats in his lifetime. House served in the army for several years, eventually retiring as colonel, later making his way back to his hometown.

House decided to serve the people of Columbus in 2018 when he was elected as the District 10 at - large seat, meaning he represents the entire Fountain city, not just one district.

“I cannot begin to tell you as mayor how many places I’ve gone and the only other elected official there is John and Marilyn,” Columbus Mayor Skip Henderson explained. “I always lump them together because they were always together.”

John and Marilyn were high school sweethearts. She now has Alzheimer’s, and that’s the reason House is stepping down.

“Marilyn has always been there for me, always there for me in the army, always doing things together... right there as my first confidant,” House told us. “When I got in council, she always went places and with people, and it just got to the point where she can’t do a lot of stuff and doesn’t like to be left alone.”

Now, city councilors are expected to appoint an interim council member for the seat Tuesday night who will serve until May of 2024. A special election will happen then, allowing the people of Columbus to vote for a permanent councilor who would then start the four year term in January of 2025.

As for the interim: “I’ve heard several names of people who have said they’d be interested. I don’t know,” Henderson said. “These are folks who are not public officials who don’t seek to run for public office, but they say if asked, they will serve. It’s going to be interesting to see who bumbles to the top.”

We have a crew at the city council meeting to bring you latest developments if council votes tonight to name an interim councilor for District 10 at-large.

We’ll keep you updated both on air and online as this story develops.