Earlier this week, the Chattooga County Farm Bureau announced that they would not be holding the forum for candidates this year because one of the candidates for commissioner backed out of the event.

The Young Chattooga County Farm Bureau was putting together the event and had planned to broadcast the forum as a Facebook Live event.  They were planning to bring in an impartial moderator from the Georgia Farm Monitor, one of the nation’s leading agricultural television and radio programs.  WZQZ Radio was going to broadcast audio from the event as the radio station has done in previous election years for over a decade.

Commissioner Candidate Blake Elsberry announced that he would not be participating.  On his campaign Facebook Page, Mr. Elsberry said that the he was not participating because WZQZ Radio was a “host” of the event and he felt that would be a conflict of interest because of Jimmy Holbrook’s affiliation with the radio station.  Chattooga County Farm Bureau members clarified that at no time was WZQZ considered or asked to be a host.  The radio station was simply going to air the audio of the event so that more people could hear from both candidates, as had been done in the past.

Elsberry commented on his Facebook Page, “Unfortunately, there were too many issues and not enough time to iron them out. I look forward to answering all the public’s questions on October 2nd”.  Mr. Elsberry was referring to a debate that will be sponsored by local television station, SKY 21 TV.

Commissioner Candidate Jimmy Holbrook commented, “The forums sponsored by the Chattooga County Farm Bureau have a long history in our county. To insinuate that the forums would not be fair to one candidate or the other seems to call in question the integrity of the most preeminent farmer’s organization in the state. At no time was the radio station asked to be a “host”, or claimed to be a “host” of the event…. If it were up to me, my opponent and I would debate every week from now until the election.”

SKY 21 Televsion is asking for questions to be submitted for the October 2nd debate.  Dan Little with SKY 21 says that the questions can be submitted anonymously.  You can e-mail questions for the commissioner and probate judge candidates to : sky21viewers@gmail.com