Former Livingston County Commissioner Steve Williams has kicked off his election campaign for the seat on the Board of Commissioners that he lost to its current occupant, former Sheriff Bob Bezotte, in a contentious Republican primary election in 2016.
Williams says he is running with a focused intent: to fix what many residents say is wrong with the current state of county government. The Republican, a Marion Township native, is a decorated Army veteran, and, like his siblings and children, a graduate of the Pinckney Community Schools.
In a release, William said he has been talking with many county residents, some of them very unhappy with the direction the Board of Commissioners is heading, so he decided to run to once again represent District 6 on the Livingston County Board of Commissioners. The district includes all of Marion Township; Putnam Township Precincts 2, 3 & 4; Hamburg Township Precinct 3; and the Village of Pinckney.
Williams said the main issues in the race include local government serving the public, filling open positions with the most-qualified people, a friendlier county court system, use of frugal and appropriate purchasing policies, and commissioners willing to meet with the public and hear their concerns.
“I firmly believe the government should be respectful and responsive,” Williams said, taking aim at Bezotte. “No citizen should have to fear being humiliated and called a liar at a public meeting because they disagree with their representative. Politicians work for the taxpayers, not the other way around.”
He said it’s wrong for public officials to skip meetings “because they don’t want to hear residents and other officials criticize their actions.”
“That kind of behavior would never be accepted in the private sector, and it should not be accepted in government,” Williams said. “Livingston County residents deserve better.”
Williams went on to say there is a need for stronger enforcement of ethics rules governing county elected officials, and he is prepared to lead that effort.
He also wants the public to have more access to court records: “If participants in Livingston County court hearings were still able to purchase video recordings of their court proceedings the way other Michigan residents can, we would not have the mess we are currently suffering through with the 53rd District Court.”
Judge Theresa Brennan of the 53rd District Court is currently under investigation for an affair she had with the lead investigator in a 2013 murder trial over which she presided.