AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – Wednesday the Sand Hills Neighborhood Association hosted an Augusta Mayoral and District 2 commission candidate forum.

In last week’s mayoral election, Garnett Johnson and Steven Kendrick were the top two vote getters in a crowd of nine candidates.

At their first mayoral debate, they got a chance to tell the community more about their plans if elected.

“Well certainly I want citizens to have hope that there’s a brighter day, a brighter future for the city,” Kendrick said. “There’s opportunity in the basic infrastructure of what we have in our government. I think with the right leadership we can move some of the pieces that are there along and get the most out of this government. I think I am the candidate who is best designed to do that.”

“It’s important to let the voters know that I stand on their side. That’s a conversation that no one continues to have throughout this race, who stands on the side of taxpayers,” Johnson said.

Pastor Vicker Thomas moderated the forum. One big topic was Augusta’s blight issue.

“Certainly bringing attention to the blight issue is part of it, but having policies that address blight are an important part of it as well,” Kendrick said.

“We have the ability to remove blight. We have the ability to create what I consider income producing properties that contribute back to our tax base,” Johnson said.

Several voters came out to show their support

“He has been doing a successful job in both of his roles as the economic development chair as well as the tax commissioner to show to these people that he’s experienced enough in order to be the mayor of this city,” Shawn Edwards said of Kendrick.

“I believe in him 100 percent. We need a man in office and he’ll be the man to do the job,” Debra Doolittle said of Garnett.

Voters also got a chance to get to know the runoff candidates for District 2 commission seat– Von Pouncey and Stacy Pulliam.

“I want to focus on the fact that as I have lived throughout the CSRA, I have realized that our neighborhoods and our communities are diminishing because we are not investing in our people,” Pouncey said.

“I am for District 2. District 2 is my main concern. The constituents in District 2 and speaking up and being a voice for District 2 and their needs,” Pulliam said.

Early voting starts June 13th and Election Day is June 21st.