Representative Debbie Buckner
Georgia House District 137
Dear Friends, Neighbors and Constituents,
When I first asked for your vote, I said that the mark of a good representative is working hard to hear what’s on the voters’ minds. Throughout my time as Your Voice in the State House, I’ve regularly toured the district so that you could tell me what issues matter most to you and so that I could tell you about progress made on our District 137 to-do list at the State Capitol.
Looking back at my listening tours through our communities, I was reminded of the old-fashioned whistlestop campaigns of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, who meant so much and worked so hard to foster middle-class opportunities and recovery here in west Georgia. In June, as I travel across the 137th to meet with you face-to-face, let’s recall the way those who lead understood the importance of seeing and being seen.
Your State Rep
P.S. For more information or to share your thoughts, click here to send me an email. You can also phone me at home at 706-269-3630. I’m always glad to hear from you.
An old-fashioned whistlestop
– Franklin Roosevelt, 1932
A timeless idea –
a whistlestop listening tour
It’s the Debbie Buckner 2014 Whistlestop Tour. Join us!
Saturday, June 14
Manchester, 9 to 10 AM. I’ll park by the Georgia LP GAS Company, 244 West Main Street and Tant’s Café, 250 West Main Street. Mayor Anthony Clifton, City Councilwoman PattiSue Elliott, Bill & Pat Tomlin, Jonah Anderson, Pinson & Kay Garrett, Lynne Carlisle and Robin McInvale will be there to welcome us. Join them!
Woodbury, 10:30 to 11:30 AM. You’ll find me outside the Black Bird Café, welcomed by Mayor Sandy Johnson, Café owner & Councilmember Vicky Matthews, Jim & Montez Sibley, Kay Williamson, Charles Moody, Kitha Kierbow, and Allen Sibley, and we’d love for you to come!
Gay, noon to 1 PM. I’ll see you at the Highway 85 Plaza. Meet with me and Mayor Ruth Nash, Sheriff Chuck Smith, Roger Lumsden, and Kay King.
Greenville, 1:30 to 2:30 PM. Join me and County Commission Chair Nancy Jones, Vice Chair Beth Neely, Commissioner Larry Whitlock, Commissioner Bryan Threadgill and Commissioner Emmitt Clark, City Councilwoman Charlene Glover, Jane Morrison, John & Louise Brown, and Imogene Todd at the R.D. Hill Senior Center under the Pavilion at 1224 Terrell Street.
Warm Springs, 3 to 4 PM. Our Tour will stop at the City Park on the corner of 85 Alt. & Hwy 41, across the street from the Welcome Center at 1 Broad Street. Mayor Bob Prater, City Council members Fred Woolfolk, Margaret Long, Geraldine Thompson, Vicki Lucas, & Sabra McCullar, and Karen Daniel will be there to welcome me, and I know they want to see you, too!
Saturday, June 21
Woodland, 9 to 10 AM. I’ll be stopping by the Fillin’ Station Café, and County Commissioner Ken Chapman, School Board Member Cynthia Carter, Mark Woodall, and Jack & Molly Hood will be there to welcome me – and you too!
Flint Hill, 10:30 to 11:30 AM. Join me by the Flint Hill Fire Station. Tax Commissioner William Huff and County Commissioner Franklin Holmes & Portia Holmes encourage you to attend and be welcomed by Sandra Bartlett, Dr. Hewlett & Beverly Hendricks and others. Join us!
Shiloh, noon to 12:45 PM. I’ll see you at the Gazebo across from Shiloh City Hall. Join me and Rev. James Copeland and Karen & Tom Johnson.
Waverly Hall, 1:15 to 2 PM. You’ll see me on the Village Green on O’Neal Drive across from Coopers Grocery, with welcomers Mayor Rusty Bowden, Councilwoman Pat Lowman, Councilman Michael Harris, Councilwoman Jan Vardeman, Police Chief Archie Hand, Dennis McPhearson, Dan Aiken, and Brenda Bryan.
Talbotton, 2:30 to 3:30 PM. Find me by the Office Building next to City Hall across from Court House Square, 23 South Washington Avenue. Join Mayor Tony Lamar, Councilman John Lamar, Pam Jordan, Henry Persons, David & Linn Jordan, Jessica Bassett Keller and Glenn & Tracy Dean.
Geneva, 4 to 4:45 PM. I’ll park at the Geneva Quick Stop. Mayor Thomas Whisnant, former Mayor and Mrs. Ollie Chester, and Danny & Sue Lockhart will be there to welcome us.
Box Springs, 5:15 to 6 PM. Let’s meet by the Family Feed Store. Store owner Charles Sizemore and Slade & Alice Johnson will be there to welcome us. Join us!
Saturday, June 28
Kendrick in Columbus, 11 AM to noon. I’ll stop at the Amber Vista Plaza, in front of the Dollar General, 915 Amber Drive. I hope you can make it!
Lakebottom in Columbus, 12:30 to 1:30 PM. Join me at the Lakebottom Park Bandshell. We’ll be there at the big Muscogee County Democratic Party BBQ get-together together with Senator Ed Harbison, Representative Calvin Smyre, and Representative Carolyn Hugley.
Midland, 2 to 3 PM. I’ll be at the Midland Masonic Lodge, 8701 Garrett Road, welcomed by Vicky Partin and others. You’re welcome, too! Love to see you.
Upatoi, 4 to 5 PM. You’ll find me at the USA Gas Station on Highway 80. Mark Robinson will be there to welcome us.
Our priorities here in West Georgia are nothing less than critical to our region’s future.
Jobs are our first priority. As jobs dwindle, our population follows, and we cycle downwards. There are answers, and they include the reality that state government can foster job creation, create the right environment, incentivize, and make the investments that attract business. The focus must be on good jobs, the kind that can sustain a middle class.
What makes an environment attractive to business is what makes a community a good place to live. We’re talking about good schools with high graduation rates and successfully placed graduates. Careful stewardship of our natural resources, the trees, the water, the parks, the tourist attractions. Access to quality affordable healthcare. Roads. Bridges. Open and transparent government. An equitable and progressive tax structure that makes ends meet.
What does the future hold if West Georgia cannot bring its priorities to the forefront in Atlanta? In the countryside where my family lives and farms, there is no full service grocery store. The largest employer is the government sector. The businesses most likely to invest are ones like landfills and incinerators. Education appropriations are down, meaning school budgets are down while local property taxes are up. It takes leadership that can reach across the aisle to turn things around.
With unmet priorities like these, this is not the time to send someone to Atlanta who will need ‘on the job training.’
I have fought for our West Georgia priorities in the State House for a decade. Serving today on the Ethics, Natural Resources & Environment, the Retirement, and the State Institutions & Property Committees and formerly on the Health & Human Services Committee, I am positioned to gain attention for our needs. I have a track record reaching across the aisle. I know how – and I have the disposition – to pull together coalitions of legislative votes to get things done. As we head into the critical years ahead, I know how to lead.
I understand the needs of West Georgia, rural, small town, and city alike. I’ve lived in Columbus, and I’ve lived outside Talbotton. I’ve lived here in West Georgia since I was 2. The full range of the challenges and the complex diversity of the new House District 137 is something I know intimately. I’m informed.
I have a track record as a legislator. You can look it up. It runs from fighting for local notification of state parks closing to protect our tourist industry, to increasing the payment by the state to counties for state inmates in county jails to protect our local tax base from unfunded mandates, to boosting retirement benefits for hard working families to make sure our seniors don’t fall out of the middle class, to research showing that requiring state government to “buy American” increases jobs. I’ve worked on issues that matter to West Georgians.
You know I’ll work for you because I already have.
The 2014 session has now concluded. I am always happy to discuss our priorities and the issues that matter to you. Call me at home, at 706-269-3630, or message me through Contact page of this website. I listen.
Paid for by the Committee to Elect Debbie Buckner
780 Fielders Mill Road
Junction City, GA 31812.
No government funds were used.
Rep. Debbie Buckner
House of Representatives
January 21, 2014:
Yesterday, a radio reporter called me and ask me to comment on a statement that “rural hospital need to close”.
I asked, “In what context was the statement made? Was it in relation to quality of care? Was it in relation to cost of care?” He responded that the thought process was when a rural hospital has a low census it is not cost effective and sustainable.
As the Representative of a rural area served by a rural hospital that has worked very hard to come back from the brink of financial disaster to operate now in the black comments like this seem so unfair.
Rural hospitals serve a very valuable purpose of stabilizing the acutely ill, handling the chronically ill, and treating the minor emergencies.
We are so often told that the number one financial driver in Georgia is agriculture and agribusiness. Most of that agribusiness is done in rural Georgia. Rural Georgians deserve to be healthy and receive quality healthcare.
New telemedicine options open the door for opportunities of a higher level of care not less care. Plus, taking care of rural patients in rural hospitals relieves the pressure in overcrowded intercity hospitals.
These hospitals are safety net for both health and the economy. Jobs in rural hospitals are many times the best paying jobs in the county. Local Bonds are affected as the hospital is many times the largest source of value so without the hospital an increase in taxes would become necessary.
As one of my constituents asked me, “How unfair is it, we give tax credits to big businesses but rural Georgia the home of Georgia’s number one industry is not entitled to local convenient healthcare?”
If we close rural hospitals is it good policy to write off one million rural Georgians from assessable, local healthcare?
It begs us to ask the question: Where is the care in Healthcare?