Created: Thu, 08 Aug 2013 09:38:00 EST
Updated: Thu, 08 Aug 2013 11:38:18 EST
The Bibb County Democratic Party is charging all candidates a registration fee to participate in its non-partisan commission and mayoral debates.
Bibb County Democratic Party Executive Board Member John Swint says in partisan races the local political party will get a portion of a candidates qualifying fee, but now that the elections are non-partisan no political parties are getting money back. Swint says charging registration fees for debates it hosts is just another way for his organization to raise money.
The organization is charging $25 for commission candidates and $50 for mayoral candidates.
"We could just as easily be having a fish fry or a car wash or whatever, this is just a way to put money in our treasury, that's all," Swint said.
Mayoral Write-In Candidate Anthony Harris says he won't be participating in the mayoral debate because of the fee.
"If a person is willing to step forward to try to do something good for the city and work for the people they shouldn't have to pay for it," Harris said.
Harris says instead or participating he will be outside city hall campaigning and handing out literature.