Ward IV Commissioner Roger Marietta speaks to supporters at a campaign kickoff Tuesday morning.
ALBANY, Ga. - Pushing neighborhood watches and community involvement, Ward IV Commissioner Roger Marietta told supporters Tuesday that he believes the city is moving in the right direction but that much is left undone and he believes he's the one that can do it.
Marietta officially kicked off his campaign for a second term as a city commissioner Tuesday. While no one has yet said publicly that they will challenge him for the seat, qualifying to be on the ballot doesn't officially begin until next week.
Standing along side some of his neighborhood watch founders and participants, Marietta touted the fact that there are 13 neighborhood watch groups in his ward with more thinking of starting.
"That's what we need," he said. "Citizen input is important for a successful city and we need more of that."
During his speech, Marietta pointed to improvements in both public safety and customer service. Specifically, Marietta heralded the work of the city's gang unit, who, as he spoke, was out building a case against Sean Bernard Frazier and Cortavious Davis -- two men believed to have ties to local street gangs who police believe were part of a group of men who opened fire on an Albany Police officer early Tuesday morning.
But, when it comes to crime and public safety, Marietta told supporters Tuesday that it would take more than just locking criminals up -- pointing to Bishop Frederick Williams, the founder and organizer of a community initiative known as Stop the Violence -- and neighborhood watches as an example of much-needed community involvement.
No one has announced any intention to run against Marietta, but the race won't be set until after qualifying is over next week.
Marietta is one of four elected city leaders whose terms are up on the board. The mayor's seat, Ward I, Ward IV and Ward VI are all up for grabs. Ward II may end up being on the ballot as well if Commissioner Dorothy Hubbard -- who is campaigning for mayor -- qualifies for the at-large seat next week.