AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – A Special Primary Election will be held December 20 in Richmond County for Georgia House District 129. 

The next in our profiles of the four candidates running: Democratic candidate Reverend Karlton Howard. He says he has a special connection with the people who live there. 

“When you know the people, you know what their needs are and you can address those needs whenever they come up in legislation,” said Reverend Howard.

In October, Reverend Karlton Howard announced his desire to fill the seat of late Georgia State Representative Wayne Howard – his brother. 

“This is our neighborhood,” said Reverend Howard. “We were raised up about four blocks down- you know, down the street. And we went to school right around the corner on Swanee Quintet Boulevard and walked down Mill Street to go to Lucy Laney and A. R. Johnson. This is our heritage. This is who we are.”

Reverend Howard’s first priority is addressing the issues of housing, homelessness and crime in his community. 

To begin solving these problems, he says education is key.

“The horse is out of the barn,” said Reverend Howard. “And we’ve got to figure out how to get the horse back in the barn when it comes to education.”

Reverend Howard is particularly interested in the 11.2 million dollar Preschool Development Renewal Grant Georgia received from the U.S. Departments of Health and Human Services and Education.

“It’s about to run out. And I would love to find out, you know, can that be continued,” said Reverend Howard. “And, questionably, did we get any of that 11.2 million dollars for our district- for Augusta.”

Reverend Howard believes the people in district 129 need someone who understands their pain and will stop at nothing to address it.

“We do upholstery business. I know every name in West Augusta that you could probably think of,” said Reverend Howard. “I’ve been in their homes, I go to church here, I preach at the churches in the neighborhood…they know me as a person and as a business person. The Constitution- its ‘for the people, by the people’. And if we can ever get back to that- having concern about every constituent, no matter where they live- I think we’ll be the better off.”

Election day is this Tuesday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. at designated voting precincts. 

Our profiles of Brad Owens, Scott Cambers and Davis Green are available on our website.