AUSTELL – Monica DeLancy said she decided to join the race for southwest Cobb’s position on the county’s Board of Commissioners when she saw something missing in the other candidates.
“I realized there was not a candidate running who represents the people, and therefore I wanted to run for the people to have a voice,” said DeLancy, 38. “I’m saying the people who have struggled every day, the people looking for work, they want a true candidate to represent them…I’m struggling just like the people are.”
DeLancy, who is facing incumbent Commissioner Woody Thompson and four other challengers in the July 31 Democratic Primary, resides in an apartment on Six Flags Drive in Austell. Some apartments in the Six Flags area with low occupancy rates are being considered as part of the county and the South Cobb Redevelopment Authority’s land acquisition program, in which it could be held for later sale for redevelopment.
DeLancy said her experience living in an apartment would give her a perspective different from the other candidates.
“I know that the families in that area are going to be affected don’t necessarily want to move out,” she said. “I want them to come out and be part of the process.”
DeLancy, who has a bachelor of science degree from Dillard University in New Orleans, taught biology at a charter school in Dallas, Texas, for five years, but has recently concentrated on serving as a community advocate, as well as helping raise her two children, daughter Brianne, 12, who suffers from sever asthma, and 10-year-old son Ernest, who has developmental disabilities. If elected, she promises to serve as a full-time commissioner, not having another job like current Commissioner Woody Thompson, a real estate broker.
DeLancy also takes Thompson to task for serving as a Republican for eight years, before running as a Democrat for the Board of Commissioners seat in 2008.
“The Cobb County Commission needs to be a reflection of the people,” DeLancy said. “It needs to be a connection to the residents so we can inspire more people to come forward and take part in their community.”
DeLancy said she would have dealt with the recent flap over a reapportionment map for commission districts either way it came down. In its once-a-decade redistricting, the state House of Representatives passed a map that would have split the community of Mableton. After a federal lawsuit was filed, a judge eventually drew a map keeping District 4 similar to its current boundaries.
DeLancy said she will work with residents no matter what part of the county they come from.
“Even though I may represent District 4, I have to make sure I can conduct business throughout Cobb, so we can have a positive view for south Cobb,” she said.
DeLancy said she is pleased to see the development efforts going on so far in southwest Cobb, which include an implementation strategy for plans involving the Mableton, Six Flags and River Line areas.
“I know it’s a long process,” she said. “It’s very encouraging what’s taking place. We need to make sure the residents know it is not going to happen overnight.”
While she hadn’t turned in a campaign finance report with the Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission as of Thursday, DeLancy, who filed for the race in April, said she has raised about $1,400, with most of that going toward her qualifying fee.
DeLancy has worked with several parent-teacher groups at her children’s’ schools, and served on the Georgia Department of Education’s Title I committee. She said much of her support is coming from parents she has worked with.
“My main goal is to make sure our families, our children, are put first,” she said.
Read more: The Marietta Daily Journal - DeLancy I’m struggling just like the people are