Prince will seek another term
District 2 Grady County Commissioner Ray Prince said this week he will seek a second, four-year term on the Grady County Commission when qualifying opens next month.
“We have so many things that need to be addressed in our county. Tired Creek is one of the largest issues. We need to get development started as soon as we can,” Commissioner Prince, who currently serves as the chairman of the board, said this week.
The District 2 commissioner says that a large amount of infrastructure needs must be resolved.
Prince said the rehabilitation of Old 179 North, which is currently underway, is a project that he is most proud of and is interested in seeing fully completed. The county road department has been working to widen the road and make preparations for the installation of larger culverts and piping underneath the road.
A full depth reclamation is planned, which will enhance the road bed and will make the resurfacing last longer, according to Prince.
Looking back over his first four years in office, Prince said he was also pleased with the work the county has done on restriping county roads. He says the Community Development Block Grant project to improve drainage and pave public roadways in the Lewis Estates subdivision in South Grady County was another project he supported.
“I am also very proud of our Emergency Medical Service. It is totally self-sufficient and is operating at a profit currently,” Chairman Prince said.
Prince noted that the county is in the process of reapplying for a CDBG grant for road and drainage improvements in south Grady County and said that a proposed roundabout, funded with state and federal funds, is in the works at the intersection of Old Thomasville Road, GA Hwy. 188 and Airport Road.
One project that Prince has been vocal in his opposition to is an aquatic center that was approved by the voters to be funded with proceeds from the Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax. “That is a project that has to be addressed within the next year,” Prince said.
In tackling the infrastructure needs and other county projects, including Tired Creek Lake, Prince pledges to use his “common sense and business sense” in making decisions and working with local, state, and federal agencies to obtain grants in order to ease the burden on local taxpayers.
Commissioner Prince also wants to continue to be a part of the team that hires a new county administrator.
“I want to hire an administrator who is aggressive in obtaining grants, but someone who will keep the lines of communication open to the board, county employees and maintain transparency for all citizens of this county,” Prince said.
The District 2 commissioner has been managing his farming operation for 45 years and he says he has built it into one of the largest farms in the county. “I feel that my management and business experience has made me successful and I want to continue to use my experience in making decisions as a member of the county commission,” he said.
Prince is one of the largest farmers in Grady County. However, the fourth generation Grady County farmer has turned much of the management of the family’s farming operation over to his son, Cole, which allows him time to serve on the county commission.
Prince and his son operate C&R Farms, which includes approximately 6,000 acres. In addition to raising a variety of row crops, Prince raises cattle and quarter horses.
“My day-to-day, first-hand knowledge of operating, as well as repairing, equipment gives me an edge. Also, my knowledge of cash flow, budgets and general bookkeeping help me when making decisions for the county,” Prince stated.
The District 2 commissioner said that when he first sought election four years ago he promised to use common sense in his decision making and to be diligent in the handling of the taxpayers’ money. “I still want to continue to do this. It is important to me to try and keep our taxes as low as possible and cut out all unnecessary spending,” Prince said.
During his four years of public service, Prince has completed the requirements to earn his certification as a county commissioner and he is continuing his education seeking a specialty in economic growth and development.
Prince, 61, and his wife, Karla, have four children, one grandchild and are expecting a second grandchild.
He currently sits on the community board of Capital City Bank and has served on the boards of the Grady County Farm Bureau and Southern States Cooperative.
His roots in the community date back to just after the Civil War when his great-grandfather bought his first farm, a 250-acre tract, for $249 on the steps of the Thomas County Courthouse.
Prince is a 1974 graduate of Cairo High School and he earned a degree from Thomas Tech, which is now known as Southern Regional Technical College.
The Princes reside at 2137 Ga. Highway 188.