Carter Infinger believes a person who has never been a county commissioner cannot be an effective chairman for the Bryan County Board of Commissioners.
“You need that experience as a commissioner because there’s a lot of institutional knowledge involved,” he said.
Infinger faces Tim Gaylor in the May 24 Republican primary. With no Democrats running for the position, the primary will effectively name the winner. Current Chairman Jimmy Burnsed is not seeking re-election.
“The chairman sets the agenda, runs meetings and is the main spokesman for the county,” Infinger said. “I think my six years as a commissioner will really help me do the job well.”
Infinger was first elected as a commissioner to represent District 4 in 2010 and was re-elected in 2014. He resigned from the seat in March due to a state law that prohibits someone from holding one elected office while seeking a different position.
“Respectfully, I resign from District 4 commissioner and hope to see y’all back in January,” he said at the time.
Infinger said he believes he’s been an effective commissioner because his career in pharmaceutical sales has no relation to the job.
“I don’t have any financial interest in Bryan County. I work solely for my constituents.”
Infinger said the county has made a lot of progress during his time in office, including hiring a new administrator, a planning and zoning director and the county’s first human resources director.
“We have more structure in place, more accountability,” he said. “We’re bringing the county up to date with new policies; bringing it into the 21st century, so to speak.”
Infinger said Bryan County is “on the cusp of something great,” and needs to be sustainable for the future.
“What we’re doing now will have an impact 25 years down the road.”
Infinger said the county is updating its website and information technology, as well as reviewing all planning and zoning ordinances.
“We’ve been very methodical and gotten a lot of input from the community,” he said.
Infinger said he has taken more than 100 hours of training through the Association of County Commissioners of Georgia on topics such as finance, law and appraising, to gain the group’s “certified commissioner” ranking.
As for any speculation that Bryan County could someday split into two separate counties, Infinger doesn’t believe it could happen.
“You never say never, but I don’t see it happening,” he said. “Each side of the county is unique and has its own attributes. There are some premier industrial sites around Pembroke and Ellabell that are really going to diversify the tax base.”