Jeremy Williams attends the Guilford County Republican Party's Reagan Day Dinner in Greensboro with his family earlier this year.
Jeremy Williams will announce plans to run for an at-large seat on Guilford County Commission next year when he gives an address this evening at the Tax Day Tea Party rally in downtown Greensboro.
Williams, who lives in High Point, works as a human resources director for a business services company. After attending last year’s Tea Party rally, Williams became active with Conservatives for Guilford County and other conservative citizens. He has attended county commission meetings, questioned spending and spoken out against a tax increase recommended by County Manager Brenda Jones Fox.
Williams is a registered Republican. The two commissioners who currently hold at-large seats, Paul Gibson and John Parks, are both Democrats.
“Over the last several years, I’ve become more and more concerned with the direction government is going, especially here at the local government level,” Williams told YES! Weekly. “There has been a longstanding tax-and-spend, tax-and-spend and spend-some-more mentality that simply isn’t sustainable. We are burdening future generations with a debt that is not going to be sustainable.”
Williams’ convictions solidified around the time of last year’s Tea Party. He wore a tri-corner hat to the rally. It wasn't an affectation; he is a Revolutionary War reenactor.
“One of the things that kept coming back to me probably a little over a year ago, knowing the direction and see what I’m seeing, could I look in my children’s eyes and say, ‘Daddy knew what was going on, but I was too busy and what could one person do?’ No, I couldn’t,” Williams said.
Considering the increased debt service costs the county is facing because of a county bond package approved by voters in 2008, Williams said county commissioners have a responsibility to tell voters up front that when they vote for a bond they’re effectively raising their taxes and that commissioners should take a hard look at bond proposals before they put them on the ballot.
Williams also favors cutting spending over raising taxes. He said Conservatives for Guilford County will have detailed recommendations before next year’s budget is adopted, but he offered two immediate examples.
In the county’s allocation for public education, Williams said, “There’s opportunities in that administrative, non-teaching side.”
He said he would also recommend eliminating longevity bonuses for employees, saving the county $2.3 million.
“I was told that that was an effort to stem turnover,” Williams said. “With unemployment where it’s at, I don’t believe turnover is really an issue.”