He should resign

Through all his bluster, his obstinacy and his willful obstruction of progress in Augusta's city government, the antics of Commissioner Marion Williams have reduced him to a mere sideshow.

Possibly not even that - at least sideshows have some entertainment value.

The list of his flawed, wrong-headed actions as District 2 commissioner could fill a book, and the latest chapter is being written now, regarding the flare-up over City Administrator Fred Russell's hard drive information.

Commissioner Calvin Holland unsuccessfully tried to gain access to the drive's private information in April. While the legality of such an act was being questioned, Williams claimed suddenly last month that he already had a copy of information from Russell's computer. He hasn't revealed exactly what he has or how he got it.

Because it's a crime to copy information from a computer without authorization, the Richmond County Sheriff's Office has gotten involved. But when investigators tried to question Williams about the hard-drive copy, he clammed up - on the advice of his newly retained attorney, Ben Allen.

That's right. An elected official - whom taxpayers fully expect to be a law-abiding citizen - is refusing to talk to authorities about a crime that may have been committed.

Augustans are counting the days until Williams' term of office expires at the end of this year. But at this point, can we really afford to do that? Enough is enough.

If there is an atom of humility left in Marion Williams' body, he would consider resigning.

He refuses to cooperate with his elected peers. He refuses to cooperate with law enforcement. He refuses to acknowledge the desires of ordinary citizens, virtually none of whom agreed with his plan to foist a needless drag strip on Augusta. He can't even summon enough common courtesy to avoid denigrating fellow Commissioner Joe Bowles by calling him "boy." And by not paying his outstanding property taxes, Williams refuses to cooperate even with the very government in which he serves.

It is ridiculous for a public official to play fast and loose with the truth, the justice system and the public's time and attention.

Officials such as Williams are the absolute last thing Augusta needs if it wants to prosper. He has abstained to stall commission votes. He has walked out of meetings to halt the disposition of city business. When he does stay in chambers, he has launched into bitter, long-winded tirades that are better measured with a calendar than with a watch.

Can anyone offer even one example of something that is better in Augusta as a direct result of Williams' tenure as District 2 commissioner?

When Williams leaves office, he will be acknowledged as one of the worst things - if not the worst thing - to happen to Richmond County government. If he has no shame about that, then he has no shame.

What's left, except to nudge him toward the door?

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Thu, 12/08/2016 - 23:05

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