Collins opts out of second term run for Coweta County Commission

For District 3 Coweta County Commissioner Randolph Collins it will be only one term served. His decision not to qualify for the upcoming election was based on two factors: his federally-funded position with the state prohibits him from running for office and, with a child on the way, Collins and his wife will be moving to a home they own in District 5 that is large enough to accommodate their growing family.

Collins said he recently learned of the federal prohibition that is a provision of the longstanding Hatch Act. The legislation prohibits federal workers from running for partisan political positions. By extension, the law includes Collins’ federally-funded job with the Motor Carrier Compliance Division (MCCD) of the Georgia Dept. of Public Safety (DPS).

Collins said he and DPS recently became aware of the legislation after Coweta County Solicitor Robert Stokely filed a Georgia Open Records request relating to the funding of his position with MCCD. The law does permit Collins, who took the division job after winning election in 2007, to serve out his term. Prior to taking the job with MCCD, Collins was a 15-year officer with the Georgia State Patrol, also a division of DPS. Prior to that time he served for a year with the Newnan Police and, for another year, with the Secret Service in Washington.

Also on Collins’ plate is the upcoming birth of a child with his wife of two years. The Collins’ have been living in his mother’s guest house in District 3 since his house sold. Meantime, his wife before they were married also owned a home approximately 300 yards inside District 5, Collins said.

“We maintained our residence in my district for the entire time,” Collins said earlier this week, adding that the guest house will be too small for the couple once the child is born. “My wife and I made the best decision for us and our child not to run.”

A single candidate, David Stover (R-Palmetto), had qualified for the District 3 seat by press time Thursday. Geographically, District 3 is situated in northeast Coweta.

As for the possibility of future political aspirations, Collins said he would not rule out a run for a county commission seat at a later date. Citing another possibility and a caveat to go with it, Collins said he would someday like to serve as Coweta County Sheriff.

“My lifelong desire is to be elected sheriff,” Collins said, adding that he would wait until Sheriff Mike Yeager was not running for the office. “He’s doing a good job and I respect him enough not to run against him.”