Steve Taylor, life-long resident of Bartow County, won the five-person race for county commissioner and although his term doesn’t begin until January, he is hard at work making the transition to one of the most important positions in local government.
“We’ve been in transition meetings with all the department heads in preparation of taking over in January,” Taylor said. “The transition to campaigning for the job and learning the job actually has been quite a relief. The present administration has been so helpful in transitioning over, so that’s made the job coming up a lot easier.”
In addition to meeting with current commissioner Clarence Brown, Taylor also has named a new county administrator to take the place of retiring Steve Bradley — Peter Olson, a local attorney.
Brown said he feels confident in turning the reins over to Taylor and his staff when the time comes.
“I’m turning it over to a good man,” Brown said. “He’s not going to miss a beat. He doesn’t need any advice from me. He’s smart and he knows what he’s doing.”
Taylor, 56, said he knows there will be challenges, which he will face as commissioner but he is ready to put into action what he spent months campaigning for.
“The biggest challenge will be the budget,” Taylor said. “Managing to do more with less is going to be a challenge. If I am able to provide the taxpayers the best service possible with the revenues that are available, hopefully we can keep services, and if we keep services intact with the budget I consider that a success.”
Taylor, who owns Taylor Farm Supply and also owns a farm in the Rydal area with wife Sandy, said he will take with him into office some lessons he learned on the campaign trail.
“Running for public office automatically sets you up for criticism as I learned during the campaign, but the staff that I’ve chosen to surround myself with is a good one,” Taylor said. “Those are the people that I will come to depend on in the future to make my job easier.”