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Elections and Politics

A Conversation with Democrat Teresa Tomlinson, Running for the U.S. Senate

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U.S. Senate Candidate Teresa Tomlinson

The Progressive Democrat Discusses Everything from Education Funding and the Challenges of Changing Technology in our Elections, the Economy and more.

Summary:

In this episode of Peachtree Corners Life, Rico Figliolini sits down with Columbus Mayor and Democrat Teresa Tomlinson to discuss what she would do if she gets elected in the upcoming 2020 Senate race in Georgia. Listen in as they discuss topics of Political labels, immigration, technology, and the ever-changing world.

Resources:
TeresaTomlinson.com

And so I keep using this reference, this analogy of government as a tool. And it really is. And so some people use it better than others, right. And you know, it’s like a paint brush, I guess. Some people know what to do with that. And people like me have no idea what to do with a paintbrush. But I happen, I guess my medium happens to be Government and making it work. And so we approached everything like that.

Mayor Teresa Tomlinson

Topic Timestamps:

  • [00:00:30] Introduction
  • [00:00:49] About Teresa and her first year of being Mayor
  • [00:09:56] Political Labels
  • [00:12:56] Changes in technology and the political response
  • [00:20:04] Minimum Wage discussion
  • [00:23:40] Education Funding and Student Loans
  • [00:30:10] How to communicate in politics
  • [00:31:56] Immigration issues
  • [00:39:41] CDC, Health, and inspections
  • [00:42:19] Impeachment
  • [00:48:22] Voting for Teresa Tomlinson

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Capitalist Sage

Capitalist Sage: Carolyn Bourdeaux Talks About Her Run for Congress [Podcast]

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Congressional Candidate Carolyn Bourdeuax

On this special episode of the Capitalist Sage, Karl Barham and Rico Figliolini sit down with Democrat Carolyn Bourdeaux, who is running for Congress in Georgia’s 7th District. Join them as Carolyn shares her views on healthcare, education, immigration and much more.

Candidate Carolyn Bourdeaux (left) with co-host Karl Barham (photo by Rico Figliolini)

Resources:

Website: https://www.carolyn4congress.com

“Everybody wants affordable quality healthcare. We all want that. We all need that. We need that for our families, for our businesses, for our community. How we get there. We can come up with different ways to get there.”

Carolyn Bourdeaux

Timestamp:
[00:00:30] – Intro
[00:04:30] – Carolyn’s Background
[00:06:11] – Taking a Closer Look at Healthcare
[00:13:43] – Uniting the Parties
[00:18:37] – Data and Privacy
[00:21:40] – Education
[00:28:46] – Bi-Partisan Work
[00:29:37] – Immigration Issues
[00:34:59] – Carolyn’s Race
[00:36:57] – Closing

Karl: [00:00:30] Welcome to the Capitalist Sage Podcast where we talk to business owners, leaders in the community about things that matter here in Peachtree Corners, in surrounding areas, where informed people, share information with folks, and just help people understand some of the issues that might be impacting, whether it’s their lives, their homes, their businesses, and so on. I’m Karl Barham with a Transworld Business Advisors, and my co host is Rico Figliolini, Mighty Rockets Digital Marketing, and the publisher of the Peachtree Corners Cagazine. Hey, Rico, how are you doing today?

Rico: [00:01:05] Hey, Karl. Good, good. Let’s talk about some sponsors.

Karl: [00:01:08] Yeah.

Rico: [00:01:08] I’ll do that. So let’s get that out of the way before we get into our guest today. So we are at Atlanta Tech Park in the City of Peachtree Corners, and it’s actually an accelerator that houses about 90 plus companies. It has a far reach through the Southeast because of the venture capital work it does as well. And because of the executive Robin Bienfait, who found this location and this place when she was an executive with Samsung, back there and few other companies. So, we’re glad to be here. We’re glad there are spots that allow us to use the podcast room. This place is located on Curiosity Labs at Peachtree Corners, which is about a one and a half mile. It’s an autonomous vehicle track that anyone could come to. It’s a living lab essentially. So Autonomous vehicles. Internet of everything. People walking, people driving, everything’s live. There’s no make belief here, and you can bring your company, small or large, larger startup or established company and actually test things on this lab, on this one and a half mile track, and the backbone of this, which is enabled by 5G Sprint, 5G technology. Everyone’s talking about 5G. You can’t do autonomous vehicles without 5G. You can’t do the internet of everything without that. But you’ve got to bring the internet to it though, right? And so you still got to use cable and fiber to be able to do that. And our lead sponsor is Hargray Fiber. And they’re the backbone of Curiosity Labs. They actually provide the fiber for this to be able to work there. This one and a half mile track.

Karl: [00:02:41] It’s incredible the technology that is already being deployed right here in Peachtree Corners to enable smart city application. Everything from E-scooters where you can get here on the scooter that driverless shuttles, both, both the backbone that’s being built and then the Sprint 5G network is enabling that to, a lot of companies are coming into this area too, to explore the technologies.

Rico: [00:03:06] Tremendous map, almost like, I mean better than planted up in Michigan, which is, we got the place to be. So if you want to find out about Atlanta Tech Park, it’s AtlantaTechPark.com. HargrayFiber.com for if you’re a small business or an enterprise size business and you’re looking for fiber and enterprise solutions.

Karl: [00:03:29] Well, today we have a special episode of Capitalist Sage where, one of the things we like to do is share, the different types of leaders and people. Thought leaders in the
community at the top, contributing to the success of our community, whether it’s through business, whether it’s through government, whether it’s through citizenship and private individuals. And today it’s my pleasure to welcome Carolyn Bourdeaux, running for the US Senate seat here.

Carolyn: [00:03:57] Congress.

Karl: [00:03:58] Congress, seventh congressional district here in Georgia. Hi, how are you doing today?

Carolyn: [00:04:04] I’m doing great. Thank you all for having me.

Rico: [00:04:06] Sure. It’s pleasure. Actually, the second time. Second for us. Yes. When you ran back in 2018.

Carolyn: [00:04:12] 18 yeah. I’m back to finish the job.

Karl: [00:04:14] Oh, fabulous. So one of the things we wanted to start off with, just kind of reintroduce you to folks that may or may not know who you are and, and kind of learn a little bit, why are you jumping into this and serving your country by running for Congress?

Carolyn: [00:04:30] Right. So a little bit of my background. I live in Swaney. I have a, my husband and I, we have an eight year old son who’s enrolled in public schools here. My day job is I teach at the Andrew Young School of policy studies at Georgia State. I teach public policy and public finance and have spent a lot of my life working in various roles in public service. I worked for several members of Congress for US Senator. I was director of the Senate budget and evaluation office here in Georgia. I founded the center for state and local finance and so have been in public life and in public service in many ways for a long time. I got into this race back in July of 2017 and was motivated by several things. But one of the big ones was health care. And what’s happened with healthcare reform in this country. And, my parents passed away, two years ago after my father, after a really prolonged illness. And, you know, all of their discretionary income was eaten up, paying for healthcare costs. And so watching the skyrocketing prices of prescription drugs, the extortionary rates that many of us pay for health insurance in this community. We have 110,000 people without health insurance. And so that was a big driver watching the destruction of the affordable care act and just sort of the many, many issues that many of us face in healthcare.

Rico: [00:05:48] That was a big issue at the time. Still is actually.

Karl: [00:05:52] It’s very topical because, you know, as you hear more about other countries battling health concerns and so on. What are some of the things you’ve seen in other countries that might help us look at healthcare and how we do it here differently?

Carolyn: [00:06:11] So I’ll start with healthcare generally. And, you know, most other countries have some form of universal healthcare and they have different ways that they’re trying to get there. They use different strategies. The one I talk about a lot is, you know, going back, standing the Affordable Care act back up. Actually implementing that legislation. A lot of pieces of that were never implemented, including the expansion of Medicaid here in Georgia. By not expanding Medicaid in Georgia, the state basically returns to the federal government between $2.2 and $3 billion a year.

Rico: [00:06:46] That’s voluntary.

Carolyn: [00:06:48] It is voluntary, yes. So they volunteer $2 billion a year at least, you know, as much as $3 billion now. And that means that around 500,000 people in the state don’t have health insurance. And that’s a lot of people to hang out to dry. I also am someone who thinks we need a public option on the exchange. We still, that won’t cover everybody. And we need a low cost alternative for small businesses and for individuals to opt into as well.

Rico: [00:07:18] How do you feel about everything that’s going on in, there’s podcasts galore now and shows about Coronavirus, the Novel Virus, Depen Damick according to see. Well, who will probably happen? It is expanding. You could get the test, maybe if you’re lucky and someone’s gonna pay for it, but if you want to get the test, I mean, there’s so many questions about who’s going to actually pay for it and how are you going to take care of hospital bills, if you’re actually affected that late and you have to go to the hospital, what’s your thoughts on that?

Carolyn: [00:07:55] So we just saw a story in Florida where a person thought they had, you know, some kind of Coronavirus. They went to the hospital and then were immediately slapped with a $2,000 bill for it. I think one of the things about Coronavirus is it really or the Covid-19 is it really shines a bright light on some really serious problems in this country. And one of them is that we have hundreds of thousands of people. We have millions of people in this state, over a million people without health insurance. And, you know, even if you’re not worried about them, you might be worried about yourself because it would be really helpful if they feel sick, if they can see a doctor. And so, I think it is. You know, we face a situation where we may be in real trouble because we still, after years of arguing about this, still do not provide health care and access to a doctor for many, many people in our community.

Rico: [00:08:53] For the people that lead it, they can’t afford it. Then I’m not going to go because they can.

Carolyn: [00:09:00] Exactly. Yeah. They are much less likely to go. And I think, you know, we talk about the response to Coronavirus and people are like, well, you know, don’t touch your face, or, be sure to wash your hands. And that’s right. I mean, and that’s good. That’s important. But we also have to recognize that the response also needs to address the gaping holes in our, I don’t want to say safety net because we think of that as being associated with poor people, but
we all need a safety net at different times. Another huge issue is paid family medical leave. We have lots of people in our community, who live paycheck to paycheck. What are they going to do if they are quarantined? We have lots of people who don’t have any kind of paid family medical leave and they need, you know, that, that money, what are they gonna do? And so when we talk about how we respond to the pandemic, we need to think not just about sort of those basic health care, washing your hands, those kinds of things, but also how as a society do we respect.

Rico: [00:10:04] Well, their economic impact.

Karl: [00:10:06] Yeah. If you do some, if you think about it, some simple math, if people start getting sick. They’re going to flood emergency rooms and the cost of service saying that many people, it’s gonna. It’s gonna really be huge.

Rico: [00:10:22] Not just the cost, but there won’t be enough beds, enough ventilators, enough equipment, enough safety equipment for the healthcare workers. Can you imagine? Yeah. Some people showing up.

Karl: [00:10:34] So there’s going to be an economic impact. The question is, you know, can you plan ahead and spend the money wisely so that people could, can go earlier before it requires an emergency room, get treatment.

Carolyn: [00:10:51] I think it’s, you know, it’s a start and we’re going to have to take this one step at a time. But there are many tiers to this issue, right? One is sort of the, you know, how do we deal with this as a society? There’s another, yes, how is our healthcare network going to deal with it? And obviously we really have to try to protect our healthcare workers. And we saw thousands and thousands of them in China get sick from the Covid-19. And, we’re going to have to think about that and do we have what they need to be supported. And one thing I see when a lot of folks are talking about, you know, it’s a small percentage of people who die from this or need hospitalization. Our problem is that even a small percentage of a large number can quickly overwhelm our hospitals. And one of the reasons we quarantine and kind of shut things down is not, because you know, it’s gonna wipe out and kill lots of people. It’s just that we have to stop that overwhelming of our healthcare system and try to manage, you know, how, the diseases unfolding. And so, you know, I know they’re good people thinking about this. I just hope, you know, that they have a voice in this process and are able to help us manage through.

Karl: [00:12:02] So I’m always curious about the impact for small business owners. So, I saw a statistic 44% or so of people are employed by small business to 99.7% of all businesses happen to be small businesses and native, they don’t, may not have the ability to extend, large company healthcare benefits that people get to enjoy. What are some of the strategies that business owners at least have available to them, and what can they do to get their voice heard, to help drive change so that they can, they can offer their employees better options.

Carolyn: [00:12:39] Well, again, there’s sort of the immediate crisis issue, right? And then there’s the bigger picture issue. And you know, for me, ensuring that we have, you know, some form of universal healthcare coverage is a small business issue, right? And we need to do it to protect our small businesses so that they are not being crushed by the burden of health insurance and healthcare coverage, and that they can provide that for their employees. So, you know, one of the many reasons I really advocate for that is because I hear from small businesses all the time and how they really struggle to get insurance for themselves and for their employees. The immediate crisis is you know, I think folks need to start advocating with the state government and with the federal government, to, you know, get some real solutions coming down the pipe. Some real ideas for what is going to happen and how we’re going to manage through this if this happens and how we’re going to protect small businesses. I think that is an issue and I don’t think it’s really been addressed.

Karl: [00:13:43] Yeah. And I hear it often when I talk to small business owners that they are doing what they need to do to survive first. And they’re, they’re one catastrophe or something away from really losing their business very often. I get asked a little bit, so as we see problems like this and healthcare is a big one, there’s a lot of others like that. What are ways that the two parties can work together to come to a solution? There seems to be a blockage of that, that used to exist many years ago. But it’s getting more polarized and we’re not seeing people come together. Have you seen hope that that can be improved?

Carolyn: [00:14:30] I, you know, I wish I could say yes, but it’s a tough situation we’re in. I have worked with Republicans, you know, in the past when I worked in Congress for, I worked for a Democratic Senator, Ron Wyden. Every single piece of legislation I worked on had Republican co-sponsors. I think that coming together is very, very important. But I think our first step is we need to agree that everybody needs health insurance. And have some basic fundamental agreement on those issues and the electorate needs to send that message, did that something they want. And then there are lots of ways to solve that problem, I think in ways that, you know, Republicans might agree with. Actually the affordable care act, right, was originally introduced in Massachusetts by Mitt Romney. It was a Republican idea. It was a bipartisan idea and we need to go back to that. A time when we can have that kind of conversation.

Rico: [00:15:30] That was a bit of a moderate, moderate Republican idea, but they disowned later though, right? So I don’t know if they’ll ever go back to that. At least this set of Republicans.

Carolyn: [00:15:41] It’s very unfortunate. It was a market based idea. If we’re trying to address, you know, get us to universal health coverage.

Rico: [00:15:49] How do you find them? For example, right now, Warren, Senator Warren decided to bow out at this point today made sense. I mean, she said no path to go, so we have to. I mean the third one, close, but she’s like 2% so there’s really two candidates, right? Two different plans. All, it’s like almost all or nothing. So where did we go from this, if, if between the
two of them? Between Biden and Sanders. I mean, I feel the burn, but I don’t know if I can go all the way there. But how do you feel about that?

Carolyn: [00:16:23] You know, when I talk to people in the district and I’ve spent a lot of time talking to people about this issue, we start with where we want to go. And I think it’s the same issue as we try to, you know, bring, you know, Republicans along and have a bigger coalition around it. Everybody wants affordable quality healthcare. We all want that. We all need that. We need that for our families, for our businesses, for our community. How we get there, we can come up with different ways to get there. You know, again, I think we already have a law on the books. That’s the most straightforward way. I do believe in fiscal responsibility and, you know, the public option has been shown to save money. And you know, I think we can come up with ways to get there. Whether it is, you know, a Sander’s way of buying weight, we all have to focus on the goal of where we want to go and then work our way through how we’re going to get there.

Karl: [00:17:14] Very often you’ll see, you know, different strategies play out, and public policy. How do you get grassroots involvement on an issue like this? How do you mobilize people to, to really get out there and like, what specifically can people do to whether their representative is Republican or Democrat get done to look at an issue in a bipartisan way?

Carolyn: [00:17:42] Yeah. I’m a big believer in education and having dialogue with folks. The most difficult policy issue I ever addressed was, helping the state balance the budget during the Great Recession. And it was a really tough time. George’s revenues dropped by 20%. And what I did and many other policymakers did was we did public forum after public for after public forum. Showing what was happening with the state revenues, showing how we’re going to try to address this issue. And I think we need to have something similar on healthcare, where we are just out there talking to folks. And I, you know, as part of the campaign, I do hundreds of community meetings and, you know, and we talk about these kinds of issues. And I think that’s very, very important for, you know, getting people, having a chance to kind of hash out those ideas in a community.

Rico: [00:18:37] Well, let’s see. We’ve got technology. You know, we talked about business a lot on this podcast, but recently Google was found to have been working with a healthcare provider that does the back office work that you all, so they’ve been accumulating data and not just generic data, but names and everything like that. It’s coming to the forefront now. Google and Facebook, I mean, they’re all in there in the mix. Apple’s doing stuff, but Google is the biggest gorilla in the room, if you will. How do you want to deal with technology where on the one hand, something like that can actually help during a crash, like an epidemic? Or can help bring down costs, but you have to share that. Oh, they got rid of the privacy limit. The privacy in this, it’s very shaky. How do you handle that?

Carolyn: [00:19:28] It’s particularly an interesting question for me because as somebody who does research around public policy, I see the enormous power of data and how it can really help
us fine tune public policies to have a much more significant impact. So for instance, Georgia state, uses analytics to try to target students who might be more likely to drop out of school and then intervene early before they run into problems. And they’ve been enormously successful with this. They’ve been really very successful driving up their graduation rates. So I see, I see both sides of it. On the other hand. I’m a pretty passionate advocate for privacy and, you know, it’s just a personal thing. I don’t want everybody knowing every click I made and every location I have been. And I would imagine most of us don’t. And, you have these, you know, very large companies. Now you have maybe the government as well, just collecting tremendous amounts of data on us. So I am interested in looking at ways where we do put some brackets around this, where, you, you see Europe and California now have passed legislation, legislation laws. To, if, if you do collect data, it really does have to be anonymous. There have to be a lot of protections around it. As an individual you need to know, so what data is being collected and you’re allowed to inquire and find out about it. And that’s very important. And as a citizen, you’re also allowed to say, I want you to get rid of all the data that would identify me. And so I think, you know, legislation around that is, is calming. And you know, we do need to find, you know, think about how we’re leveraging its power, but at the same time, protecting privacy so you’re not able to identify individuals and really drill down in a way that can be very damaging to someone should information, you know, get out.

Rico: [00:21:21] Okay. I mean, you look at China, we looked away, they left one province in a country like that can’t do that because there’s no privacy. Because the privacy, they can lock it down and just stop in there. Supposedly, if we can believe there, their rates of infection, it’s way less now than it was four weeks ago.

Karl: [00:21:40] I’m curious if, like if I get asked a little bit about education, you, you work a lot with, students and folks that are going for, I see now the emphasis on education. Kind of getting deemphasized in a lot of circles. There was a time where we led with EDU educating everyone, free education. It was, maybe a national security issue as well as a way for economic advancement. And now, there’s a lot of people there. They’re paying for colleges getting expensive, and you’ve got some candidates that are, you know, everyone should be able to go to college for free. And, and most jobs are now requiring that. How do we balance or rebalance our focus around educating our young?

Carolyn: [00:22:30] So this is a district where we care a lot about education. You know this is, the seventh district is about families and children and raising our children and giving them access to the American dream and the opportunity. And I would venture to say that most all of us agree that one of the keys to that is having a really good education. And, you know, I do think we have taken our eye off the ball there. And, when I left Georgia state, one of the things I was working on, was looking at currently about 40% of young people, in Georgia get some sort of higher education, whether it’s through our technical schools or through colleges and universities. To compete with countries like Korea, Canada, and Japan, we need 60% to get through. That’s a big shift. I think I calculate the back of the envelope. It would mean investing around a billion more in our public universities in Georgia to get to that. So we spend, I think around $2 billion in
state funds on our universities, so that’s an enormous jump and investment that we would need. We need to start thinking about that. I generally am not a free person, but I am an affordable person. When I graduated from college, I had a tremendous amount of student debt. It is a big part of my story. And so I’m deeply sympathetic to young people now with that ball and chain around their ankle. And so it needs to be within reach of every student who wants to go to get a higher education. They should not see cost as a barrier.

Karl: [00:24:11] That’s one of the things now, I feel there’s a generation from 2005 to probably 2015 that went to college or in the economic crisis when they came out, they were probably underemployed because of the economy. And I feel they were at least five years behind where previous generations or peers were. And I don’t know if they ever caught up or at least they haven’t caught up yet. They might’ve already wanted economically. Where they’re getting married at 27 to 33 and buying the first house. They’re delaying starting a family by five, six years because they’re still paying off student debt and those types of things. What can we do? you know, for that group that’s now getting older and what do we do to prevent that if that were to happen again? So, so many folks don’t get left behind.

Carolyn: [00:25:10] Yeah, so we have, you know, one, we just, we have not made the baseline investments, in programs that are used to reduce the cost of higher education. I went to school on Pell grants and I don’t think we’ve increased the Pell grants in almost a decade instead of what that covers. We have disinvested in our public universities. In 2007 or so, around 75% of the revenues for our public university, 75% tax dollars came from our investment, 25% came from tuition. Now it is below 50% comes from sort of the state, you know, guarantee or the state input. And, you know, over 50% comes from tuition. And we’ve seen that in dramatic jumps in the tuition. So one of the big things we need to do also is just reinvest in those public universities so that they are affordable. You don’t go to them and you have, you know, some people have hundreds of thousands, but a lot of, you know, $20-$30,000 in debt when we leave. So those are certainly some things we can do to try to address that. I’m interested in some of the loan forgiveness as well. I think, you know, there are a lot of folks out there who have a lot of earning potential, right? And they, it’s not going to be a big issue, but, you know, for lower income folks, people who choose service jobs, people who choose jobs that are, you know, in the community that might not make as much, you know. Pegging their student loan repayments to a smaller percentage of their income is certainly something we can do. Forgiveness, you know, for people who go into that.

Rico: [00:26:49] Really what’s going on now, right. Because the education department now have the program of forgiveness for a certain set of people that applied and mostly that that’s not happening.

Carolyn: [00:26:59] They, they’ve undone it. Yeah, yeah. Yes, absolutely. I mean, I’m running, I deeply disagree with the priorities, right. That we’re setting right now.

Karl: [00:27:08] Even Frost, they go into a field like teaching, they’re leaving because the salaries they’re making, they can’t live. And anyone here could tell you. I remember a teacher that probably changed the course of your life because of the way they were able to impact you.

Rico: [00:27:24] They even spend their own money. I mean, most of them do buy stuff for the classroom.

Carolyn: [00:27:28] I tell them the most important person in my life right now is not some wall street banker. It’s not. It is my son’s second grade teacher and we need to treat her and pay her, and I support her accordingly.

Rico: [00:27:45] Do you think I’m saying this, been talking to her a little bit more? I think not a free, again, free, but everything could be free I guess, but a free childcare and talking about providing that childcare. And also making a creek in kindergarten. You know, putting an investment in the lower grains to hopefully bring, because it is a big difference, I think for a kid that’s young that doesn’t get 12 well, it doesn’t have the right exposure. I mean, what do you think?

Carolyn: [00:28:16] I do support moving towards universal Pre-K. And making that available. Not, not mandatory, but that any, anybody who wants to, does have access. Just like we have kindergarten, move that down a grade. And that’s important. But we need affordable childcare too. There are lots of women, you know, we want people to work. If you want people to work, then you need to support them as they do work. And you know, having quality childcare is also extremely important.

Karl: [00:28:46] You’re running as a Democrat. And I’m curious, are there things that you see the Republican party doing well in policy, something where they think you think they’re on the right path and they might be leading the way in any particular area of policy currently.

Carolyn: [00:29:05] I think there’s a lot of good bi-partisan work, around the VA and around veterans issues. That’s something where we have a situation that is, is quite bad in the VA. I talked to lots of veterans who have had to wait years. I had a friend whose brother killed himself, as he came back and didn’t get the mental health treatment that he needed. And I see people in both parties, you know, working together to address those issues. And those are very important ones and I’m glad to see them move forward on a bipartisan basis.

Karl: [00:29:37] I wonder like, issues like immigration there, there’s a lot of polarizing opinions about it. But you do hear some talk of, of finding ways to bring more people, to be naturalized citizens or to become citizens within the country. I hear it on both sides. Republicans talk about it. They seem to get stuck and how, and when, and the pace to do it. But our approach to immigration has drastically shifted in 30 years, where I grew up in New York and there was the Statue of Liberty. And, and, and I remember it on school trips. It was a premiere, poor, and, and,
and, and arms opening. And, and there’s been a shift, and I don’t know if it’s a shift in the people, is it, or is it a shift in the policy?

Carolyn: [00:30:28] Oh, well, I mean, I think Trump clearly ran on a huge anti-immigrant platform and, the seventh congressional district, 25% of the people in this district were born outside of this country. And it is the policies coming out of Washington now around immigration just strike at the heart of this district. And it is interesting, you know, the business community needs immigrants. And, we have always benefited from bringing the best and the brightest from all over the world, hard workers from all over the world, coming to our country and, making a life for themselves and their families. And, you know, we have rolled that back and I was interested to see Mick Mulvaney out there the other day, you know, I guess he slipped up and said that, you know, wait a minute. These really do have a big economic impact. If you all will recall back in 2007, Georgia passed a huge anti-immigrant piece of legislation and it’s kind of evaporated. And what they found was right away, after they passed it, you know, hundreds of millions of dollars of crops rotted in the fields in South Georgia. And, you know. So it’s this weird dichotomy. They’re like, we don’t want immigrants, but then, you know, once that kind of fewer passes, Oh wait, we really do need them.

Rico: [00:31:51] How would they not realize that?

Carolyn: [00:31:52] Right. I don’t know, but you know, and then they’ve legislation kind of, you know, it was found to be unconstitutional or illegal in various ways and kind of vanished. You know, we’re going to see that same thing cycle again. And one of the problems we have is that our immigration laws do not match the economic realities on the ground, and we need to have that match. I mean, the other thing about immigration is that, you know, we are now, you know, we are a country that deeply believes in human rights and respect for human dignity and to see what’s happening at the border, with these camps and, you know, taking children away from their parents. You know, everybody’s a parent just feels in their guts, you know, to how wrong that is. And we have just lost our moral bearings now around immigration. And that fundamentally has to be reestablished. I was just in a Hispanic church a few weekends ago and sat down with a man whose brother was here. He ran a landscaping business, you know, in our community right here. And his, wife, for some reason ended up being undocumented, was deported by Ice back to Honduras. And, he followed her back and was shortly thereafter killed. His hands were chopped off, his head was chopped off and his wife was raped. And we’re sending people back to their countries and they’re being killed. And, that’s really, really wrong. And we have to address that. Both the moral, the human rights issues, as well as the economic ones in our immigration policy.

Karl: [00:33:28] There’s a lot that’s going on here in Metro Atlanta with immigrants. If you go to areas like Clarkston and others where you’re seeing, I’d call it a rebirth. The immigrant communities building businesses there, there’s a program there called Start Me, with Emory where they’re partnering with the universities and friends of refugees and nonprofit organizations in the community to help new Americans and refugees build businesses here in
the community. And, and it’s amazing when you see folks that have the ability. And all they might need is some help and guidance on navigating. There might be some language skills that they’re, they need some help with, but they’re putting out good business. Catering businesses and restaurants and clothing businesses and so on because they want to provide, they want to create jobs within the community and make sure the money stays within the community. So you know, if folks want to get a sense of how immigrants are thriving, you know, there’s areas right here in Metro Atlanta that they can go and experience that if they, if they want to kind of just meet someone, have lunch, have coffee, and it changes your perception.

Carolyn: [00:34:40] It’s not a zero sum game, right? They are creating business and opportunity and that in turn is lifting everybody up. And I think that’s another important point about immigrants coming into our community. You know, they bring a tremendous amount of economic growth and vibrancy to our community.

Rico: [00:34:59] You know, a few minutes left. And then we gotta let Caroline go. But I want to get, if you don’t mind, just a couple of questions in about politics. That’s just not issues. But, so we have Sanders and we have, do you have a choice? As far as you know, down there, they’ve been talking about Sanders and down the ticket and how that may affect other candidates. You have six, I think, running as the democratic primary in the seven candidates in the Republican. So they’re having a free for all on the other side, but you’ve raised the most money, you feel good about winning.

Carolyn: [00:35:44] I do. Yeah. I come in with, you know, I came within 433 votes last time. I’m flipping the seed. It was the closest race in the country. And, you know, I’m starting at, you know, tremendous momentum coming out of that. I think a lot of folks. Saw what we accomplished in 2018 and saw it as a victory. I mean, we closed a 20 percentage point gap in this area, to get to that point. The previous Democrat came in at 40%. and so, you know, that enthusiasm and momentum and excitement, you know, it is reflected in my fundraising numbers, right? Those are not. But also any endorsements. I just picked up Hakeem Jeffries, a Congressman who came, Jeffery’s endorsement. He is a rising star in the house leadership, democratic house leadership. I have John Lewis, Andrew Young, Hank Johnson, Sam, you know, a host of local folks. And it’s just, you know, we are coming back to finish what we started last time.

Rico: [00:36:43] How do you feel about Kelly Laughlin?

Carolyn: [00:36:46] Oh, bless her. Welcome to politics.

Rico: [00:36:57] I appreciate you coming down with us. Carolyn: [00:36:58] Absolutely.

Karl: [00:36:59] Just getting to talk to folks and get to hear more about what you think about policies, and issues that are affecting people every day, you know. Thank you very much for coming and joining us today.

Carolyn: [00:37:15] It’s a real pleasure to talk with you guys.

Karl: [00:37:18] Well, we want to thank everybody for listening to the Capitalist Sage Podcast, today. I’m Karl Barham with Transworld Business Advisors. You, we help business folks, figure out exit strategies for businesses. Rico, what do you have coming up?

Rico: [00:37:34] Sure. So Peachtree Corners Magazine, if you go to LivingInPeachtreeCorners.com, you can find out. Well about what, what’s going on in the city. But the next, this one is about youth sports, doing good with homegrown nonprofits. And a few other stories that were chock-full stuff. So that’ll be coming out in April / May issue. So April 10th, right after spring break downs.

Karl: [00:37:58] And I’m going to suspect in the next few weeks and months, there’s going to be lots of activity here in Atlanta Tech Park, our sponsor, and where we broadcast this podcast from, part of the City of Peachtree Corners, Georgia. We want to bring, be a place where business people can come together, interact with people in politics, in the community, to help make what the city’s really all about. So, I want to thank Atlanta Tech Park and invite anybody to come out here and take a look whenever they have a chance. And for that, that’s the end of this week’s podcast at the Capitalist Sage. Thank you everybody for listening. Take care.

Rico: [00:38:38] Thank you.

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Elections and Politics

Floyd M. Scott Running for Gwinnett County Sheriff [Podcast]

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Floyd Scott, Election, Gwinnett County Sheriff

Forty plus year veteran Floyd M. Scott shares with host Rico Figliolini why he is running for Gwinnett County Sheriff. Recorded at Atlanta Tech Park, in the City of Peachtree Corners GA

Resources:
Website: FloydScottSheriff2020.com

[00:00:30] – Intro
[00:03:21] – About Floyd
[00:06:02] – 287g Program
[00:11:34] – Police Morale
[00:19:29] – Recruiting
[00:20:38] – Changing the System
[00:27:38] – Seeing the County change
[00:30:50] – Gwinnett County Sheriff Responsibilities
[00:33:43] – Mental Health Departments and Jail numbers
[00:35:41] – Budgets and more changes
[00:38:15] – Officer Integrity
[00:41:54] – Closing

“…My profession is a passion that I love and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. You know, it’s just something that once you get it in your system, it’s something that you just want to, it’s all about servitude. You know, I’m a servant. I’ve been a servant all my life. You know, I went into the military as a servant and now retired as a servant.”

Floyd Scott
Hargray

Podcast Transcript

Rico: [00:00:30] Hi everyone. This is Rico Figliolini, host of Peachtree Corners Life. I want to welcome you here tonight. We’re at Atlanta Tech Park where we do all our podcasts from. Atlanta Tech Park is an innovation hub with over 70 companies here. A place that can fit over a hundred companies here. These are startups that are in the city of Peachtree Corners here. Atlanta Tech Park, growing, doing high tech stuff. And this place has event space, has Financial Fridays, Wine Wednesdays, they have a whole bunch of things going on here and seminars. The big April, the event in FinTech that’s going on as well. So check out their website: AtlantaTechPark.com, and you’ll find that more events that are going on here. This place is actually on a road that’s becoming more famous as we go. And it’s Curiosity Lab at Peachtree Corners. It’s a one and a half mile, 1.7 mile track. That allows a 5G, Sprint 5G enabled and allows autonomous vehicles to be able to run on it in a live laboratory environment, in a place that people are walking, driving. I mean, you, if you’re a company looking to do work in the autonomous vehicle area or on the internet of everything where technology speaks to everything that can be on a street, just think about it. You know, it could be apps, could be cars to talk to other cars, of course, talking to apps, like poles, crossing areas, maybe solar powered roads that can energize an electric car. This is what can be done here. It’s a very unique place, and even though it’s 5G enabled, that means wireless, right? Broadband. The main hub, if you will. The backbone of what brings the internet here is really still fiber and our lead sponsor is Hargray Fiber. They are essentially the backbone of Curiosity Lab at Peachtree Corners, and they are a company known in Southeast and expanding in Southeast, bringing in solutions both to small businesses and enterprise solutions where they can bring fiber cable to your business and be your IT company in that business situation and bring voice, internet and everything you need in, in a better way than I believe Comcast and some other companies can do. So check them out at HargrayFiber.com and Atlanta Tech Park. Now to introduce my host, my host, my guest today. We’re talking to, let me introduce him here. There you go Floyd Scott. He’s running for Gwinnett County sheriff, and we’re going to have the chance to be able to talk to you. Floyd, thank you for coming.

Floyd: [00:03:10] Thank you for having me here.

Rico: [00:03:11] I appreciate you coming on the show. I want to be able to you know, find out a little bit about you, you know, so tell our audience a little bit about Floyd Scott.

Floyd: [00:03:21] Well, I’ve been in public service for over 40 years. I was, I’m retired military actually. I was military police, and so it was an easy transition for me to actually go into law enforcement here in Gwinnett. I’ve been in Georgia since 1993. I’ve been policing in Gwinnett County for close to 24 years. I was with the Gwinnett County police department. And I just retired from the Munich County Sheriff’s office after 17 years. And the only reason why I retired was so that I could run for the sheriff cause it needs to be changed. Gwinnett County is a very diverse County, we speak over a hundred different languages and some say that we are the most diverse County in the nation. I believe that.

Rico: [00:04:05] Certainly the most diverse County in the state of Georgia. For sure. So, you know, that’s a long 40 year, 40 plus years of service. Didn’t you ever get, didn’t you ever get tired of it?

Floyd: [00:04:16] Well, as my profession is a passion that I love and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. You know, it’s just something that once you get it in your system, it’s something that you just want to, it’s all about servitude. You know, I’m a servant. I’ve been a servant all my life. You know, I went into the military as a servant and now retired as a servant.

Rico: [00:04:36] Do, so do, I guess, you know. So tell us a little bit, since we’re going there, tell us a little bit about your belief system, about you know, your values and how you base your decisions when you work.

Floyd: [00:04:50] Well, I’m a man of faith. I’m a family man. First I have, I’m actually well vested in here in Gwinnett County because I have seven children. And they live here, and I have eight, seven of them live in Gwinnett County. One decided to go to Alpharetta, but I actually have five that are in the household. And I have two that are adults. They live in Gwinnett County. So I’m well vested. And I believe that the people that I love near and dear, I want them to feel safe. So, I also want citizens in Gwinnett County to feel safe as well, you know?

Rico: [00:05:26] So, okay. Do, are any of your kids? Do they say, dad, I want to be, I want to get into law enforcement? Do any of them say that?

Floyd: [00:05:36] Well, I have four beautiful daughters that they look up to me. I think what they do right now is they go to school and they talk to the teachers and they talk to their classmates and they say, my dad is going to be the next sheriff of Gwinnett County and they’d be running around talking, talking to the teachers. It’s funny. I love it, you know.

Rico: [00:05:56] So, why, why are you seeking office? Why do you want to be the Gwinnett County sheriff?

Floyd: [00:06:02] Well, I believe in rebuilding relationships within the community. I believe in rebuilding the trust between the citizens of Gwinnett County and law enforcement, you know, as I’m in that there’s been some injustices that have appeared that are occurring in Gwinnett, and there’s some injustice that are occurring in the County Sheriff’s office. For instance, the 287g program, for instance.

Rico: [00:06:29] So explain that to people that don’t know.

Floyd: [00:06:32] Well, what it is, is a contracted agreement between the sheriff of Gwinnett County and immigration. What it does is anybody that’s an undocumented immigrant that comes here in Gwinnett County and is arrested by any of the local police that are here, including the Sheriff’s office, and they are undocumented and they get arrested, whatever the incident may
be, if it’s just a traffic citation of traffic, driving without a license or no insurance, and they get arrested and they went to Gwinnett County jail, they have a team of workers that are there, that are dedicated to immigration and that they find that they are undocumented. Then they will be handed over to immigration for deportation.

Rico: [00:07:24] Ice, essentially, right?

Floyd: [00:07:25] Ice.

Rico: [00:07:25] Ice, which is what I think many people might know it as.

Floyd: [00:07:29] And the thing of it is, some of these people that are undocumented, they left that country for a better life. Some of them even escaped that country for a better life, and a lot of crimes are going unreported because the undocumented immigrants feel that is, they would rather endure the crime that’s being committed against them instead of reporting it to the police and have the police, I guess, check them out and find out that they are undocumented and then deport them.

Rico: [00:08:11] Have you come across stories like that where people have been deported for really minor offenses and torn away from their families?

Floyd: [00:08:18] Oh yeah. You got some people that I’ll actually leave them at home in the morning, going to work like normal. And they get pulled over by the police for whatever the reason may be and it, and they could be making a wrong turn or making a turn without putting the signal on, or is, it could be a very or varying, different things that could happen. And they pull them over and they don’t have a driver’s license, so.

Rico: [00:08:45] Now 287g is enforced, it’s voluntarily enforced by the County.

Floyd: [00:08:52] Yes, it’s an, like I said, it’s an agreement between the Gwinnett County sheriff and immigration. So if the sheriff decided that he didn’t want it anymore, then it would be gone.

Rico: [00:09:05] And there’s no repercussions?

Floyd: [00:09:07] There’s no, there’s no repercussions whatsoever. So that’s why when I do become the next sheriff of Gwinnett County, that’s one of the first things that I’m going to be doing away with.

Rico: [00:09:16] Do you find that the police officers that are tasked to this? I mean, most people, I guess that they used to seeing police shows and stuff and or reality shows even, and they may be aware that, you know, you get a collar, you have to spend time at the jail processing that collar. For example, the person that you brought in arrested, do you find that a big waste of time for the Sheriff’s department to be doing that?

Floyd: [00:09:43] In most cases I find it to be a waste of time because I don’t think that the 27 week program should even be there because like I was there before, the 287g program was even there. And we had a system in place that we would contact a consulate of whatever nationality that we had put in the jail. And then we notify that consulate. If the consulate wanted them, they would come and get him. And if they didn’t want him, then we would do a background check on him to make sure that they didn’t have any violent crimes or anything like that. If they had a violent history, then yes, we would notify. But if it was a minor crime, like, like for instance, no driver’s license or no insurance, and we wouldn’t still notify that consulate, but if the consulate said, nah, we’re not going to come get him, then we would just release them back into the public cause they were no threat to the public.

Rico: [00:10:35] Right. But they still come to court, I guess later.

Floyd: [00:10:38] They would if they didn’t pay that fine. Usually when they, when they were born to the, to the jail for no driver’s license, they were bought because they couldn’t sign the ticket because they didn’t have, they couldn’t verify the address from where they were. So they would bring them in. So they would pay that fine. If they paid that fine and got released for, you know, for instance, it was no driver’s license and they paid a fine, right. Or no insurance. They paid that fine and they would be released. They didn’t have to have a court date because they already paid the fine. The court date was set up so that they could go before the judge and, right. Hey, what? I was fine. I needed the payment if they paid it.

Rico: [00:11:17] So Floyd M Scott becoming sheriff first day, 287g would be out the door.

Floyd: [00:11:22] 287g would be gone.

Rico: [00:11:24] Gone. Okay. All right. So, yeah. Obviously that’s the single most important issue at this point, it sounds like.

Floyd: [00:11:34] Well, that’s one of the, that’s one of the things that, I’m emphasizing strongly. But I also, the morale within the jail itself, you know, like I said, I was here for 17 years. I left on August 19th, 2019. Six months prior to that, I knew I was going to be running for sheriff, but nobody knew in the Sheriff’s office, so I was going around to all the deputies that worked in the housing units, and I was talking to the deputies that were working the streets and I was asking them if they had a way of changing something to make their jobs easier. What would they do? And they would give me ideas. So I was already, I guess you could say interviewing them to find out what is going to make that the new system around. And that’s what I carried, that’s what I’m carrying with me now.

Rico: [00:12:31] Okay. So what would be the first thing that Floyd M. Scott sheriff would do? The first 90 days? I mean, what would you start with? Give me the top three or four things that you’d want to start accomplishing.

Floyd: [00:12:43] One of the things that I would do immediately in addition to the 27g is I would allow the deputies to wear beards.

Rico: [00:12:52] They can’t wear beards?

Floyd: [00:12:53] They can’t wear beards at this time unless they’re in a specialized unit. Then a specialized unit, but I would allow them to wear beards. I wouldn’t get it. They’d have, I’d have regulations on it. They couldn’t grow it beyond probably an inch or so, but of course that would let them grow up because we have a lot of deputies that have, I guess, trouble shaving. They have razor bumps and it is painful. It’s my whole military career. I had to have a shaved profile.

Rico: [00:13:24] Some people just don’t want to shave. I mean, I just cut this down a little bit, but it’s been like…

Floyd: [00:13:29] As long as it’s neat. As long as it’s neat and it’s trimmed nicely, I don’t have a problem with it.

Rico: [00:13:36] All right, so dress code that, that being part of dress code though, you would address that. What other things would you address?

Floyd: [00:13:43] I know that there is a, you got, deputy ones, the ones that I’m not, that have no desire to be certified deputies to walk around and carry guns or work at the courthouse or anything like that. They love working in the jail. They call it deputy ones, three months. Then you’ve got deputy twos and then you’ve got deputy, master deputies.

Rico: [00:14:06] So deputy ones work in the jail system and don’t carry weapons.

Floyd: [00:14:10] They don’t carry weapons. The only thing would they, the thing of it is you got some of them that’s been there for like 10, 11, 12, 15 years. And then you have a young officer that comes in and they, I guess they’re at that point, other than the pay for performance, that’s the only raise they get is each year where a deputy that goes through the mandate Academy and gets certified. It’s a pay grade increase and also have the opportunity to go and get tests for corporal, test for master deputy, test for sergeant and go up the ranks. Well, the ones that don’t have a desire to go to mandate, they don’t have that option. So I’ve, that’s one of the things that I want to bring. I want to have a rank structure for the DSO that there would be pay parity for, because you got some of these DS ones that have one set of training, right? The deputies that are going to mandate. And they have more knowledge in how to work in the jail then, then, then the young guys that are coming through.

Rico: [00:15:20] Sure. Experience counts for something, right?

Floyd: [00:15:21] Yes.

Rico: [00:15:22] But the DS2s are carrying weapons.

Floyd: [00:15:25] And they carry, they carry weapons once they leave the jail.

Rico: [00:15:28] Right. And are they, I mean, they are, obviously the pay grade is different also because they’re more likely, something will, likely would happen. I mean, the more hazardous duty, if you will.

Floyd: [00:15:39] You got some that any jail that has the capabilities of carrying weapons, but yet they’ll go into the locker room and they’ll change into civilian clothes and you’ll never know that they were deputy two. But all the DS ones they have to dress down where you don’t recognize them because they don’t carry guns and we, they’re forbidden to walk around in their uniforms outside of the jail.

Rico: [00:16:08] Because they don’t carry guns.

Floyd: [00:16:11] They don’t carry guns in. That’s one of the first things that a person would, there’s wanting to do harm. He’s going to seek the person that looks like my law enforcement.

Rico: [00:16:19] Right. So that makes sense to me. All right, so, and what would, is there, what else would you do? That’s the, the next?

Floyd: [00:16:25] Well, I know that, we don’t have our own training facility. We pretty much share a train facility within Gwinnett County police. I would like to. I’d have to talk to the board of commissioners about it. It wouldn’t be something that I could make happen but something that I can bring to their attention. You know, we don’t have our own shooting range. We gotta we have to, rely and share the shooting range of the Gwinnett County police. Where we could, develop our own shooting range. That way we can train our deputies to shoot because they, some of them have problems with shooting and yeah, we’ll tell them to go to these shooting ranges that are, that you have to pay, but we don’t give them the fundamental training that they need sort of before they go to the Academy.

Rico: [00:17:13] Is there a formal training with the Cornell Police Academy?

Floyd: [00:17:17] There is a formal training with the police Academy and then they go through like training scenarios, and they go and shoot, we prove the 40 hour actually scheduled to go to the range or go to the Academy. But then you got some of the ones that have been certified that still have trouble shooting. Yeah, so and the only time that they even go and shoot that weapons
is if they’re slated to go to the range and then that’s got to be whenever they can get it going during the day. It’s usually Monday through Friday doing certain set hours that the police department is open. Well, if we had our own range. You got people that work at night, they got certified instructors that can take them into a range in the jail or in a facility that is right outside the jail and teach them how to shoot when they have that downtime.

Rico: [00:18:12] Let me ask you something. I know the Cornell police sometimes there’s, there’s always problems with hiring. There’s, they’re always short. They’re, they train police. Within two or three years. Those police officers may leave to go to another County. It’s good to know the police department because better pay, maybe better benefits. Maybe better, more out. Let me, I’ll be finding that to be the case also in the Sheriff’s department right now.

Floyd: [00:18:38] Yes. The morale is not as at the level that it should be at the level that I would like for it to be. I know from all the training and leadership classes that I’ve gone through, if you show your people that you care for them and that you care about their wellbeing, they don’t care about the pay. You can give them as much as much money as you want to, and they are still unhappy. If they feel that you don’t care about that, right, then they’re going to leave regardless. They’re going to go somewhere with somebody cares about them.

Rico: [00:19:10] Yeah. So you’re finding that level of morale is really like that.

Floyd: [00:19:15] Yes, I’ve experienced it.

Rico: [00:19:17] Okay. So if, so, your vision and goal for the, for the office and what you want to accomplish is really sounds like, to me it’s really morale based.

Floyd: [00:19:28] Yes.

Rico: [00:19:29] It’s changing the system. So then, so would this also, would you, how would you improve? Do you think we have enough Sheriff’s deputies? Do we, should we improve the recruiting as well?

Floyd: [00:19:40] The recruiting system is good. The repeating, the recruiters that we have in place right now, they’re very, they’re very good at what they do. And, they will continue to, to excel and bring people in. It’s just the retention part of that. And I feel that a majority of that retention has to do with us actually caring for them. The people that don’t, we bring in. Also the leadership. A lot of people forget where they come from. You know, I worked my way through the ranks. I’ve never forgotten where I came from. And I can go and, if I have any problems, I’ll go and ask a deputy one who works in our housing unit or out on the street constantly and knows it inside and out and say, Hey, well how do you do this? How do you do that? I don’t get this big head to the point where I’m the big man, so I don’t need to ask you what, you know how to do this, but that person knows how to do that.

Rico: [00:20:38] Sure. So what did you, have you found anything surprising when you’ve been out in the field like that? Asking deputies those questions, anything surprising that you found? Floyd: [00:20:48] What I’ve found is, first of all, they’re shocked that they mean, you are asking me? Oh wow. I feel they feel, they feel part of the system. You know, they feel, they feel valued. And that’s all I’m trying to do is I’m just trying to bring value. I want you to feel that you are included in the process, you know? And not the, we are up here at the top and we are just gonna rain down. I want to know what you would have to say. So, and that’s what, that’s where a lot of things have been lost in this place, is that once you get into these high ranking positions, you feel that you got to make all the decisions and you don’t want anybody else to make them. And then if the decisions are made from below you, then you might feel that you’re inadequate, but I don’t feel that way.

Rico: [00:21:46] Do you feel some people do feel, some people have been in the system way too long?

Floyd: [00:21:51] Yeah.

Rico: [00:21:51] That sort of sounds like, yeah. Do, do you think the Sheriff’s department or the sheriff, the County sheriff should have either a term limit also?

Floyd: [00:22:01] I think, I think it should be three terms. Three, three elections, and that’s it. I don’t think they should be in there until either they die in office or they are there until they’ve been there 30, 40 years or whatever. I think it should be a three term limit.

Rico: [00:22:21] It’s funny, I was doing some research before this interview of impact county sheriffs across the country and you either die in your, your office essentially, or you hand it down to your son or family member in some counties. It’s, I was reading that and I was like, man, that’s unbelievable. It’s so, junior can take the job of… I can see that in certain counties, you know, maybe not in the cities areas, but where they literally handed that to family members or they die in office because they’ve been there so long. What, what, what’s the vision and goal that you, or i’m sorry, not the vision and goal. What’s the quality and experiences that you feel is the best core candidate for this office?

Floyd: [00:23:05] Well, first of all, it has to be somebody that’s actually worked at the Sheriff’s office that knows the constitutional responsibilities of the sheriff. And have a love and care for the employees that work for the sheriff. You got civilians. We’ve got over, I think it’s the last eight, 800 plus officer’s deputies as well as civilians. You want them to come to, to work and not dread coming to work, but coming to work to be productive because they enjoy being in the environment. What I’ve experienced, and just from being a supervisor and being a manager at the Sheriff’s office, where you got some people that drive up in the parking lot and they’ll sit there and they’ll contemplate. Wow, I’ve got to go in and should I call in sick because the morale
is that bad? Well, I, I want them to feel wanted. I want them to feel welcome and I want them to feel that the production, the work that they do is valued. I want them to feel valued.

Rico: [00:24:17] I can see how if someone is, is angry or is now feeling valued. How’d that would really, be a detriment to the way they work their job as well. If they have anger.

Floyd: [00:24:32] Well, you’re going to have, you’re going to have people that will have, you’re going to have a bad day. They’re going to come in and they want everybody to feel the way they feel. So they’re going to come in with a certain attitude. And they’re going to try to, and the thing of it is you’ve got to have those strong leaders, be it ranked leaders or chosen leaders amongst the peers, because you’ve got peer leaders too, as well as rank leaders that can go going and talk to a person in and say, Hey, what’s going on?

Rico: [00:25:06] Does the county sheriff do like other corporations, do they do, I imagine they do reviews on a regular basis, right?

Floyd: [00:25:13] What they have the annual, they have, if there’s a, a deputy that is in trouble. They got programs that set up that they can seek counseling without anybody knowing. You know, and the responsibility of the supervisors is to see that. And it also is each one of the deputy’s responsibility to see if one of their peers or somebody that they feel is going through something that somebody is made aware of it.

Rico: [00:25:47] You see where I’m going with that question, right? Because I mean, in a normal corporate environment, all right, someone doesn’t do the job, right? Paper falls off. File gets lost, things happen. It’s different in a law enforcement where lives are at stake and some cases even if it’s a little different, right?

Floyd: [00:26:04] Absolutely.

Rico: [00:26:05] You want to weed out some people that you know shouldn’t be maybe that particular job, but you know, they could do that job better. Sounded like saying we’re going to weed out everyone that’s bad, but I’d say let’s put them into the right place, but they might work better.

Floyd: [00:26:18] Yeah. We, we have a system. Well, I believe in the system that if you’re not used to being around people that cause this, law enforcement is a people oriented business for me. You gotta care about the people that you, that you are talking to. Otherwise you, you know. We can put you in a place where you don’t really have to talk to people. You don’t have to have any encounters with people at all. But, that’s one of the things that the supervisors would have to find in, in, and weed them out, and to sit back and sit down and have a conversation with them. I mean, as this a profession that you really want to be in, I mean, considering this is a public service, right?

Rico: [00:27:03] And some of them may be carrying weapons, right? You have to have the right, well, emotional stability and sleep.

Floyd: [00:27:10] You’re absolutely right, because one thing about being in the law enforcement arena, one minute, I tell him all the time, I would tell him all the time, one minute you could be helping an old lady across the street, and the next moment you can be in a fight for your life. So you gotta be really prepared mentally for that.

Rico: [00:27:38] Then you’ve been, you’ve been in this county a long time, 23 or 24 to 24 years. That’s almost as though they’ve been here since 95, so 23 years. The county’s changed a lot. I mean, I mean, you’ve seen it firsthand, obviously even better because you’ve worked in, in the system. What, what, what do you think are the pressing things? What areas of the County and what, what, what do you think needs more attention? They may not be getting that now. I mean, there’s more gang activity. Maybe there’s more crime, I don’t know. And depending on who you talk to, what part of the county you’re, you’re talking about things change.

Floyd: [00:28:19] Well, I know when I was honestly out there on the streets policing Gwinnett County, the areas that were bad, but the demographics have changed. And people have transitioned from those locations. When I first started back in 2001 in with the police department, Norcross was a very, very heavy gang drive by shootings constantly. Cause my first week there I had to deal with three drive by shootings, you know, and people getting killed from gang disjoint, gang size. Well the crime is slowly moving. Well, the 85 corridor. And what we got to do is we just got to, yeah. You just got to focus. You know, when they got the, the crime stats, they got to do the crime stats, the comp stats that they do to, do to an area. And I even have an app on my phone that any crime that committed that I’ll get briefed. Brilliant. So you can know what areas though most crimes are ridden.

Rico: [00:29:30] Not just college, you’re talking about incident reports.

Floyd: [00:29:35] Actual incident reports where we got, okay, well, larceny was committed here, you got the aggravated assault or domestic violence, or you know, even a heavier crime then that and now they actually have apps that you can actually wherever your address is, we can have it within however many mile, 10 mile radius of your home.

Rico: [00:29:59] I have one now. It’s, I forgot what it’s called, this crime mapping. It’ll, every morning I would get something and I’ll say, one crime, one incident or five. It’s just about four. The interesting part is, at least in this area, I don’t, I see less break-ins percent, unless you’re on a main road. Which always tells me that it’s just an easy in and out, but I don’t see a deeper into a community. And I see a lot of just stuff happening in like, parking lots and office, spray cans and stuff like that.

Floyd: [00:30:31] One of the other amazing things that are happening, is they have these tag reader cameras put in neighborhoods that, that can afford to have them in their neighborhoods. And then I guess in some of the, the industrial locations that they have as well.

Rico: [00:30:50] You know, the city of Peachtree Corners is actually putting the license plate identification cameras throughout, at least the main roads that are city owned, if you will. And then anyone that wants it and their homeowner association that can go at it and the city will put it there, as long as they pay for it in their property taxes prorated on all that. You were talking before about constitutional mandate, so just for those that don’t understand, because. County sheriffs from jurisdiction to jurisdiction take care of a variety of things. It’s not always the same in every County. Some of them manage jails as their main priority, some of them, because they do that, then they may be the largest provider of mental health services in the County just because of the nature of the beast. They perform evictions, sometimes running car office, variety of things in different counties. What is the constitutional mandate for the Gwinnett County sheriff? What would, what are you tasked to do? What’s your responsibilities?

Floyd: [00:31:47] Our responsibility is the jail. Maintain security of the jail. The courthouse. Make sure that we have an adequate amount of deputies that command that courtrooms, so that the judges will have security in the courtrooms. We, service the warrants, the civil papers. We are actually in charge of the family violence, the temporary protective orders that are put in place. Whenever it is a family violence order for a temporary protective order, it comes to the Sheriff’s office. We control the family violence orders that come down. And we also, maintain the sex offenders. And there’s, there’s an app out there too. You go to the Gwinnett County Sheriff’s website, you can actually tap into the sex offenders. So you will know who, if there’s a sex offender in your neighborhood or anywhere close proximity to you.

Rico: [00:32:50] Because they have to be registered for a period of time. Floyd: [00:32:51] They have to be registered and monitored. They actually go on. I’ve done it. I’ve actually went out to these, registered sex offenders homes to make sure that they were home. If they’re not home, then we go into front of the judge and we’d say, Hey, this is, this person wasn’t here at the time he was supposed to be here, and then the order, the judge issues an order, we’ll go get them and bring them back in before the judge. The judge is going to say, if you can maintain, you know your probation in your home that you registered for, then you can stay here, not jail.

Rico: [00:33:24] Well thing is there, does that expire at some point? I guess they have to probation or did they say . Floyd: [00:33:30] It all depends on the seriousness of the crime and I’m sure there’s times they can go and get their charges expunged. But it all depends on the severity of the crime.

Rico: [00:33:43] What, with going back to a little bit about what I said about some maturity sections in health, mental health services, I would imagine in the jail system. Have you seen the
growth of that, of people that you know how, or have some mental issues and you have to provide services? Does, the County does do that?

Floyd: [00:34:06] We have a 24 hour mental health, so we have mental health workers that are there 24/7. At one point, I was told that we were like the third largest mental health facility in the state of Georgia. I mean, because we, we have so many mental health, we have a, we have a unit that’s dedicated to mental health. And of course there are other mental health cases that you’d seen any time in the housing unit when the deputies in the housing unit and somebody acting out of character or they just been sentenced to something. Well, they’ve been sentenced to a crime that they’ve committed. Then we usually, it’s an automatic red flag that pops up and we’ll have mental health go on and check them out, make sure that they are okay.

Rico: [00:34:56] How many, how many, how many prisoners are incarcerated in?

Floyd: [00:35:02] There can be right now that could be anywhere from 1,800 to 2,600 at any one given time, but it’s pretty much been on the low end. It’s been around 2000. Rico: [00:35:16] Okay. Is that a trend that we’re seeing, or is that just?

Floyd: [00:35:20] Well I hope it’s, it’s one of those things that it’s going to slowly go on a decline. You know what I mean? If you look at the ratio of people that are in Gwinnett County as opposed to who’s in the jail, that’s a small number.

Rico: [00:35:34] It is surprisingly small, actually. We have almost a million people and surprise. It’s only that’s, yeah.

Floyd: [00:35:40] Yeah.

Rico: [00:35:41] So, it’s interesting to me that the Gwinnett County sheriff is not just a law enforcement person, but you’re as such way ahead of, you’re like the CEO of a company really.

Floyd: [00:35:51] Absolutely.

Rico: [00:35:52] Cause you handle and you take care of the budgets. I mean, you have one big budget and I don’t know where the money comes from, if that… Floyd: [00:36:01] On the board of commissioners we erect from, they pretty much go before the board of commissioners and let them know. From, well, the years before. And you know, here’s a trend, what we’ve used in has been times when we didn’t use all the money and we actually turned it back into the County and let them know we’ve saved this amount of money. We didn’t need it. So we return it back to you.

Rico: [00:36:25] Do you think there’s any major renovation or major work that has to be done? Capital improvements?

Floyd: [00:36:30] I, well, that’s one of the things that I want to bring. Is at the jail, we need a parking deck. The parking on Wednesdays, they have a court, that administrative court. And the parking lot is bad. They have, we have an overt, we had an extended parking lot that’s way up the Hill around the corner that you have to park at and then walk, you know, walk through the parking lot. And, you know, it’s just, this is tedious. But if we had, The capital improvement would be that I suggested. I’ve already talked to some of that board of commissioners, and this made a suggestion that we would, if you will, build a parking deck for the employees so that they can have it. That way you can free up all that extra parking lot for the citizens.

Rico: [00:37:21] They could have control acts.

Floyd: [00:37:22] The control for the employees and they won’t have to worry about that car is getting bad in the last, because there’s been plenty of times when we’ve had to be run out to them in the parking lot because somebody’s car has been broken into or we find somebody that’s using. We’ve had people try to OD in the parking lot.

Rico: [00:37:43] Tried to OD on purpose?

Floyd: [00:37:45] Yeah, they, we got them with the needle in the arm. And they’re out and we have to give them that Narcan. Yeah. They bring them back.

Rico: [00:37:52] Said that Narcan could be done as many times as you feel like it’s, you get that high and get that Narcan four or five times, six times and just keep going until the last one might not work or this. The sad part about that I mean people are getting used to it. It says, is there any, anything that I’ve missed, Floyd, that you want to share with us?

Floyd: [00:38:15] One of the things that, that’s near and dear to me. I know there, I’ve been doing this business for, like I said, for over 40 years. But I don’t think, I don’t think any handle any law enforcement agency has ever gone and actually apologize to the citizens for some of the wrongs that have been done to them by law enforcement. You know, I feel that if any person or a loved one or a friend that they may know that ever been wronged by the law enforcement or for whatever reason. I wanted to apologize to them. I know we are, we are held by a high standard. I mean, we, we are, we give an oath to uphold the laws of the land. And we were supposed to treat every citizen with dignity and respect. And if anybody was ever treated less than what we are mandated in that we’ve sworn to do. Then I wanted to apologize to them and just ask for their forgiveness for all of law enforcement, because we’re not all bad. No, we’re not all bad. Yes, because a small percentage of us do that. You know, unfortunately we see it in the news and we capture it on video and believe me, that’s one of the things I want, I, I applaud is the fact that we do have the body cams. Because what it does is it eliminates, because when I used to work out on the street, if somebody filed a complaint against you, then you had to prove that right then that it wasn’t true. No matter how much integrity you have, right? You still have to prove it, but that body cam pretty much speaks for you as well.

Rico: [00:40:04] And I think that’s helpful because it seems to me that, you know, if someone’s going to like to be a criminal that’s lying more than an honest another person, let’s say. Cause they want to get out of what, what happened maybe? So that body cam is worn by sheriffs as well, not just police.

Floyd: [00:40:18] It’s worn by the sheriffs. They have, we even got inside of the jail with the rapid response team.

Rico: [00:40:25] Okay, so this way they can prove that whatever they’re doing this course to be doing that.

Floyd: [00:40:30] Oh yeah, absolutely. That’s one of the other things that, I will, revamp is the rapid response team because they got a lot of controversy around them for ELA. So we’re going to, it’s going to be a total retraining, reeducation, because I’ve seen the tactics. I wasn’t always happy with all the tactics, but I will say that once I become the sheriff that, that will be a revamping of the rapid response team. We, it’s definitely needed because we got, scenarios that, where the rapid response team was very needed. When I grew up, we, we, we grabbed a couple of deputies. Hey, let’s go get this person correct. Now they actually train. So we make sure that the training is consistent and that they’re there to help get the person on the control and down. That’s it. After they get him under control and taken away, it needs to be, then they back down. We’ve had some incidents where it’s been in the news where you have a person that’s mentally ill and you’ve got four guys on him and then you punch them in the face. I mean, that doesn’t make sense.

Rico: [00:41:46] No, that doesn’t. It really doesn’t. If they can’t control a person with four people. That’s just doesn’t make sense.

Floyd: [00:41:53] Yeah.

Rico: [00:41:54] We’ve been talking to Floyd M. Scott, the candidate for Gwinnett County sheriff. Where can we find out about you?

Floyd: [00:42:03] Well if you go to FloydScottSheriff2020.com you will find my webpage. I’ll pop right on up and May 19th…

Rico: [00:42:14] May 19th election day. And that’s primary day too.

Floyd: [00:42:18] Primary day, Floyd Scott.

Rico: [00:42:20] So go, go to that. And if you can’t remember that, just Google Floyd Scott for sheriff. And that will come up too, cause that’s what I did. This was a pleasure having you on.

Floyd: [00:42:31] Absolutely. Thank you.

Rico: [00:42:33] And I want to thank everyone for joining us. Want you to remember about HargrayFiber.com our lead sponsor as well as Atlanta tech park here in the city of Peachtree Corners. And don’t forget to get your next issue of Peachtree Corners magazine. It should have hit your mailboxes in the past week or so. And if it hasn’t, let me know cause then I have to get back on the post office. But thank you guys. Appreciate it. Thank you Floyd.

Floyd: [00:42:57] Thank you.

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Candidate Keybo Taylor, talks about his run for Gwinnett County Sheriff [Podcast]

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Keybo Taylor Candidate for Gwinnett County Sheriff

There are many candidates in the upcoming election for Gwinnett County Sheriff, so what makes Keybo Taylor different from the rest? Join Rico Figliolini as Keybo shares stories about his life in Gwinnett, his opinions, views, and ideas of what he will do if elected Sheriff. Recorded at Atlanta Tech Park in the City of Peachtree Corners.

Resources:
Website: https://keyboforsheriff.com/
Social Media:
@KeyboForSheriff
Facebook

Where in the show to find these topics:
[00:00:30] Intro
[00:02:31] About Keybo Taylor
[00:08:47] Keybo and Football
[00:13:25] Faith and the Campaign
[00:17:00] Details about Sheriffs and Police
[00:18:47] Sheriff Qualifications
[00:19:17] Why run for sheriff?
[00:23:30] Keybo vs. other candidates
[00:24:50] Sheriff’s department and ICE
[00:29:57] Attracting Staff
[00:38:44] Technological Advances in the Sheriff’s department
[00:41:54] Fiscally responsible decision making
[00:47:20] Closing

“You know, when you go back to talking about faith base, I think I’ve been moved in this direction for a long time, and I didn’t even know I was being moved in this direction…I believe I would say that it started with the Trayvon Martin shooting. So social media, drove some people out to make a lot of different comments about some things. And what I was seeing was people that were in law enforcement that were making statements and taking on a particular attitude that I just knew for a fact that that’s not the position that a law enforcement officer should be taking…So back in 2016, you know, we were having more and more incidents that were starting to come out. And I was very vocal about some things, you know. Very critical about some positions that I felt like law enforcement was taking. And it wasn’t just because of that, it was just things that I was seeing and hearing from people that held those positions. And I’m like, that’s not what this is about.”

Keybo Taylor

Podcast transcript

Rico: [00:00:30] This is Rico Figliolini, host of Peachtree Corners Life here in the city of Peachtree Corners. I have a special guest today, but before we get to him, I want to say thank you to Atlanta Tech Park for being a sponsor of this podcast. We’re here in Atlanta Tech Park in the city of Peachtree Corners. They’re like, think of them as an accelerator with an incubator. This is about 70 companies I’ve worked out at this location. Well, high tech, innovative type companies, and we’re right on the Technology Parkway, which is Curiosity Lab at Peachtree Corners, which is also another big thing that’s going on here. 5G technology driven through Sprint. Mobile technology, IOT, the internet of everything. This is just a great place for any company to be situated in this area and to be able to work with a lot of other innovative companies. Our lead sponsor is Hargray Fiber. They are, a business that crafts customized solutions for hundreds of businesses in the Southeast, and they deal with small businesses that are looking for affordable bundle services as well as enterprise level businesses looking for a full suite of managed it services. Hargray Fiber customizes their solution that works best for your business. So the new Peachtree Corners that we’re putting up. In other cities, they’ve worked B2B, business to business. And if you’re looking for a local fiber cable company to do your internet, your voice and TV solutions. This is a company that is, works on a local basis, but it’s in the Southeast. So now that we’ve done that, let me introduce our guest today. Keybo Taylor. Hey, Keybo.

Keybo: [00:02:12] Good morning. Good evening.

Rico: [00:02:15] Well, depending on when you’re listening to this, but Keybo here, is running, he’s a Democrat.

Keybo: [00:02:21] I’m a Democrat. That’s correct.

Rico: [00:02:23] We’re not hiding from that. So we’re, we’re running for, you’re running for Gwinnett County sheriff, right?

Keybo: [00:02:30] That’s correct.

Rico: [00:02:31] Excellent. So the whole idea of this podcast would be to know a little bit more about Keybo about what a Gwinnett sheriff does. What do you expect to do out of it? And to also find out a little bit about your philosophy. So why don’t you tell us, just tell us a little bit of who you are.

Keybo: [00:02:46] Sure, again, my name is Keybo Taylor. I always like to start out with the fact that I am a lifelong resident of Gwinnett County. One of the few that was actually born here in Lawrenceville, Georgia. Back when we had the old button going at hospitals. So that dates me up just a little bit about how old I am. I’ve lived here in Lawrenceville, you know, other than just the short period of time here, there’s four school, but I’ve lived here in Lawrenceville practically my whole life. It started with the Gwinnett County police department when I was 23 years old, fresh out of school, worked there for 26 years, had a very colorful career, I would say. Yeah,
great career. Wouldn’t change anything about it for the world. I retired from the Gwinnett County police department back in ‘09, 2009. But while I was there, I had the opportunity to work. 14 years of the 26 years I was there I worked in, I spent them in special investigations, where I worked. Everything from, you know, narcotics type crimes, organized type crimes, things such as that. And, got to spend some time as the narcotics unit commander. There is a Lieutenant, and then I retired as the, as a Major out of one of the precincts. But I also retired as well as the first and only at that time, the highest ranking African American in that, in the history of the Gwinnett County police department.

Rico: [00:04:24] And a police department that really is not, maybe today it is, but it wasn’t too diverse back then. Wasn’t?

Keybo: [00:04:30] No, it wasn’t there, the diversity, I don’t remember us having any Hispanics there or Asian officers at that time. There were three other African American officers that was there to pull, what the police department at the time. But I was hired on. So, when I started, we had a total of six.

Rico: [00:04:55] Out of?

Keybo: [00:04:56] probably at that time we were probably about 150, 150, maybe 200 men in the department.

Rico: [00:05:05] Men, women came way later.

Keybo: [00:05:07] There had been women, yeah, I’m not trying to be one sided with it, but, 200 it was probably between 150-200 sworn officers that was there.

Rico: [00:05:23] And you went, you said you went to Central Gwinnett high.

Keybo: [00:05:26] I graduated from high school here in Lawrenceville.

Rico: [00:05:31] And you’re wife Linda?

Keybo: [00:05:34] My wife, Linda, she is from Dacula. Interesting story about her. I met her in the first grade. First grade, that’s correct. That was before they had actually integrated the, the school system here in Gwinnett County. So we all started a school in the first grade at Hope or Renwick, a school, which is in Lawrenceville. So she was bused over from Dacula and of course, what goes in Lawrenceville, and that’s where I actually…

Rico: [00:06:08] They brought your wife right to you.

Keybo: [00:06:11] Little did I know in the first grade that that’s how it would be.

Rico: [00:06:14] Wow. And you have it from two children.

Keybo: [00:06:17] We have two kids. Kesha and Justin. And, my daughter in law, which is also my daughter, Christina, and they have two kids. And, and, we’re looking for a third one to be on the way here soon.

Rico: [00:06:31] You’re looking, I’m assuming they’re looking also, right?

Keybo: [00:06:33] They’re looking also.

Rico: [00:06:36] That’s cool. It’s good to have, I’m waiting for, I won’t have grandkids for a while. I think they keep telling, my kids keep telling me they’re not going to have kids, so.

Keybo: [00:06:43] I’ve heard that, really. So let me tell you how quickly it changed. I heard that too. And then the next thing I heard when he got married, they came in, they told me they wanted five kids. I said, okay. I was hoping for three, but you know, let’s see, y’all five comes out for you, but if you give me five and bless me with five, I’m okay with it.

Rico: [00:07:04] They were shooting for the moon.

Keybo: [00:07:06] And let me tell you, they keep you young though.

Rico: [00:07:09] And then they’re the ones that you really want to protect.

Keybo: [00:07:12] That’s correct. One of them. Kristen, I called him my campaign manager. If you ever go onto my Facebook, you see pictures where we had the Kings day parade back here this past Monday. And he was out with me, and he was, I think he had more fun than you know, just about everybody else out there. But he got to ride in the car, got out of the car, passed out a handout, lists and things such as that. But we had a great time.

Rico: [00:07:41] That’s cool, that’s a great way to bond with kids.

Keybo: [00:07:44] Let me tell you. It is, it really is.

Rico: [00:07:48] And you, your educational background. Just to tally through some of the stuff in your background, you went to Mercer university?

Keybo: [00:07:55] I got my undergrad at Mercer, criminal justice. Got my master’s degree from Columbus State University in public administration.

Rico: [00:08:04] Cool.

Keybo: [00:08:07] May I also say something else too. Yeah, I’m a, I’ll always like to throw a couple of other things in. I’m a proud graduate of the Georgia command college class number 10. And, also, the DEA Drug Commanders Academy out of Washington. So yeah.

Rico: [00:08:29] A lot of experience, that’s for sure.

Keybo: [00:08:31] Thank you.

Rico: [00:08:32] A lot of street experience I imagine too.

Keybo: [00:08:34] I spent nine years as an investigator. Nine of those 14 years was actually working cases, so yeah.

Rico: [00:08:40] And I imagine the stories you can tell that you have from that. Did you play football?

Keybo: [00:08:46] I did.

Rico: [00:08:47] Did you enjoy playing football? I remember that was a while ago. So it’s not like people worry about concussions, that one stuff.

Keybo: [00:08:54] You know, I tell people back in the old days when I played and I’m dating myself again, you know, when you came off the field, if you didn’t have that transfer, a paint on your helmet, that was a sign that you didn’t do anything. So, you know, the more paint that you have from your opponents helmet on the yours is so that you had a better game. So, but no, we didn’t really worry too much about that back at the time. But let me tell you what it did for me. Of course, I enjoy playing and you know, I’m dealing with, you know, bad knees and backs and everything else now. But what it did for me was right out of high school they had started an eighth grade program here in Gwinnett County, and I get a call from a guy one day by the name of Dick Hodges, and he called me up and told me, he said, look, you, you know, I just got your, you know, your information from, your head coach over at the high school, Talley Johnson. This is right after I graduated. And I’m like, okay, you know, what is this about? You said, I want you to come on and coach football with me. And I’m like, you gotta be kidding me. You know? Cause I felt like I said, you know, when I was playing football, I couldn’t even hardly remember the plays out there. You know, you’d be so nervous out there on the field, but, but let me tell you, it was the start of something very profound in my life. I started coaching, on the eighth grade staff with this guy. And, I’ve coached little league football in high school off and on since 1979. Any time that I had the opportunity between that to actually get out there and be involved, you know, with these kids, with these youth, you know, I’ve done it. So, you know, sometimes I’ll look at it as is my ministry. Sometimes I’ll look at it as just my calling.

Rico: [00:10:50] Have you found kids changing over the years that the fact that you’ve done it so long cause you found that the attitudes changing a little bit?

Keybo: [00:10:57] Oh yes, yes. You know, I’ve coached kids, kids of kids that I coached, you know, in a couple of situations I’ve had the grandkids of, you know, of a player that I’ve had. You know, you’re really just a little bit here, but, but the thing of it is, is that you do see there has been a change and, you know, that the one thing that is constant in life is change. From generation to generation with these kids. You have to be, you know, an agent of change is what I call it. I don’t know what anybody else would call it, but you know, you have to help people through change and you have to be willing to change and modify what you do yourself. You know, I know that some of my tact is out there. This, I coached this last year and I posted on 11 year old group. And one thing that I noticed is, is that, you know, I really. You know, had to start to change my ways too, you know, and I’ve always been a little resistant to change, but this past year, I coach with my son and he was more of the easy going guy, you know, and I was still that, you know, the one that was, you know, this whole rough guy out there. But let me tell you, when those kids, man, you know, they show you so much love. And that’s the one thing that I, you know, I’ve seen that is that, it’s more so today than it was when I first started. They require more, they require more love, and they’re not, they’re not ashamed or reluctant to show you back love, you know? It’s, you come in the practice, Hey coach, how you doing? You know, how was your day today? You know, and they would ask you how your day was. And you know, I don’t know if they were doing it just because the parents had told them that was a good thing. But yeah. But some of them, you know, it’s, it’s legitimate and it’s like they cared about you, you know, and how you were doing. A short story and I know I’m getting off on a lot. We’ve got a long way to go, but, I, I was having some bad knee problems out there and I was coaching with a cane this last year and they would come, how are you feeling today, coach? You know, how’s your knee? You know, it’s like, it hurts, man. You see me, you, you know, walking and limping out here and hurt. But, but, probably one of the best experiences I’ve had with that.

Rico: [00:13:25] It’s a good thing they didn’t tackle you on the field that would’ve been bad. So let’s, let’s go down that a little bit. And you have, countless churches, missions and pastors have endorsed you. So, you know, big question. You know, I come from Brooklyn, I’m a Brooklyn Tavin Catholic, came down to the South, became born again Christian, breaking Democrat or Reagan, although I’m not Republican. Right now, I’m agnostic to some degree, and I will choose my, my, my, poisons better. But, faith, especially in the South, I find faith that drives a lot of things. So how does faith work for you in what you’re doing?

Keybo: [00:14:14] I am very strong in my faith. I was raised Baptist. We kid about the fact that, when I was coming up, man, we spent some days on Sundays, all day in church, and you know, but it should foundation. And one thing that, no matter where I’ve been, whatever is going on with me, my faith has always been what has guided me. Sustained me, you know, lifted me up. Brought me through some things, man, that I didn’t think I was going to be able to get through. I always tell the story that when it was left up to me, I could’ve really put myself on a bad path.

Rico: [00:15:01] We all feel the same sometimes.

Keybo: [00:15:02] But I also knew too, that it was my faith that brought me back. So when I got started with this one thing that we talked about, what we were, you know, sitting around talking about what does this look like? What is it that we’re trying to get accomplished? And no matter where we went, whatever we did, who we talked to, it always came back to how you connect with the community. And what I’ve always known, man, is the people that have their ear to the ground, that knows what’s going on in the community, that can connect with the communities of faith based leaders. So we, we set it up to where, you know, we reached out to, you know…

Rico: [00:15:52] Some of the individual pastors?

Keybo: [00:15:54] Most of the, a lot of the individual pastors, cross faith, you know, and, and when we would talk to them and ask them, you know, what is important to them, you know, I didn’t go in there telling them, you know, what was important to me right? I asked what was important to them and almost to the man or woman, it always came back to, it was how law enforcement interacted with the community. You know, especially out there in parts of the community that never saw law enforcement unless they were coming in, you know, for a negative reason. So, that’s what we did is we talked about partnership and in with, you know, faith based leaders. You know, I gave them my word that, you know, when I, when you know that this partnership won’t stop, you know, we’ll continue to have these conversations and make sure that, you know, that I’m doing my part from the Sheriff’s department to make sure that, you know, we give a better light or a more positive light of law enforcement.

Rico: [00:17:00] So let’s go down that road a little bit because most people might not realize what a sheriff really does. So, so why don’t you help us out a little bit. So as far as, what’s the difference, let’s go through this fairly quick just to educate a little bit. What’s the difference between a sheriff and a police chief or a sheriff and police?

Keybo: [00:17:18] Okay. Police chiefs. All your, most of all of your police departments here in the State of Georgia is mandated by either a council or commission. Here in Gwinnett County, it is, they’re mandated by the, they answer to the Gwinnett County board of commissioners. So the police chief is actually hired by the board of commissioners and their function is, is for law enforcement. You know, investigative…

Rico: [00:17:46] Felonies, murders?

Keybo: [00:17:48] You know, whatever. Yeah, investigating all types of crimes, traffic control, at some calls, you know, responding to accidents, that type of thing. Sheriff’s department is constitutional position. And basically what the mandate of the sheriff is, is to run the jail. Secure the courts and to serve warrants and civil papers. Those are the main functions of the sheriff. But one thing about it is, is that the sheriff has a lot of other discretions of other things that you can do outside of those mandates, you know, providing that your budget and your manpower, you know, allows or permits you to do it.

Rico: [00:18:37] We, as far as the boundaries of the Sheriff’s jurisdiction, would be what? Well, I mean, you’ve already stated it, statewide.

Keybo: [00:18:45] Statewide, that’s correct.

Rico: [00:18:47] Qualifications to be a sheriff?

Keybo: [00:18:50] You have to be post certified, I believe, or get your post certification within a certain time period of you being elected. You have to go through the process or record, you can’t have felonies or, you know, those type of things. Then you go through the election process and if you are elected, then you, there’s some other training that you’re mandated to go through.

Rico: [00:19:17] All right. Let’s get back to a little bit to why you chose that you want to, I mean, you’re retired, you’re doing football. I mean your life could be a little easier. Why do you want to be sheriff?

Keybo: [00:19:29] You know, when you go back to talking about faith base, I think I’ve been moved in this direction for a long time, and I didn’t even know I was being moved in this direction. You know, just. You know, you kind of navigating through life. I was happy, you know, I was happily retired, got out and got to do some things that, you know, I had always wanted to do. Tried coaching football at a higher level that, you know, more of a professional level. You know, we own a, a fitness business on the side too. So, you know, I’ve got to dibble and dabble in a whole lot of different things, a lot. But what I was seeing was. Saw some things taking place, started, I believe I would say that it started with the Trayvon Martin shooting. So social media, drove some people out to make a lot of different comments about some things. And what I was seeing was people that was in law enforcement. That was making statements and taking on a particular attitude that I just knew for a fact that that’s not the position that a law enforcement officers should be taking. Sheriff Conway made a statement and I think he, well, I don’t think, I know. He called, made a statement about, Black Lives Matters being a terrorist group. So he and I had a conversation about it and, and, you know, I was just like, you know, look, you’re the sitting sheriff. You know, if that is your thoughts, initial thoughts, but you know, you’re the sheriff for everybody in this community and, you know, to make a statement like that is not helpful to what this situation is as the, what it calls for. So back in 2016, you know, we were having more and more incidents that were starting to come out. And I was very vocal, you know, about some things, you know. Very critical about some, some positions that I felt like law enforcement was taking. And it wasn’t just because of that, it was just things that I was seeing and hearing, you know, from people that was, that held those positions. And I’m like, that’s not what this is about. You know? So what I did was I organized, a prayer vigil up at the courthouse. This was in July of 2016 and what we did was, we brought in, you know, clergy, faith based leaders, law enforcement, and we got them together. We did a prayer vigil up to the court, the justice and administrations, on the grounds there. And what we did was, after they pray for each other, you know, we took that opportunity for everybody to meet a police officer. You know? And what was profound about it was, you know, I knew some people, man, they brought their kids up
there and they were telling me, you know, Hey, look, my kid is afraid of the police. You know? I said, well, this is an opportunity. And they got to see these police officers for who and what they really were. You know, they are people every day out here trying to do a job. You know, just trying to get home to their families and they were wanting to do the right thing. So from that, and I know that that’s a long answer, but you know, when you asked me, you know, that’s, that was the beginning of it for me. And it wasn’t until maybe about January last January, December, January, people were approaching me about running and, I finally made up my mind around about January that you know, that I would do it. So here we are.

Rico: [00:23:16] And it takes a lot of steps, obviously, I think family and consideration with the family and stuff.

Keybo: [00:23:21] It does. It helps to have the support of your family.

Rico: [00:23:24] Yes. More before anyone else’s endorsements.

Keybo: [00:23:28] That’s correct.

Rico: [00:23:30] It’s a crowded field.

Keybo: [00:23:32] Yes, it is.

Rico: [00:23:33] So, you know, being that it’s a crowded field, what would you, you know, what differentiates you from, from the rest of that field?

Keybo: [00:23:40] Well, all of my opponents bring certain things to the table, you know, in terms of education, in terms of experience. What makes me different is my connections with Gwinnett County. My roots are here in Gwinnett County. The things that I’ve done outside of law enforcement is what sets me apart. You know, I can work across the owls with Republicans, Democrats, anybody, all social groups, racial groups. I just had that experience that, you know, what I have done and you know, the connections that I made, it just makes me what I believe to be the stronger and the best candidate. And, you know, when we talk about, all of us talk about similar things. So what we want to try to get accomplished out here, but you have to be able to build those relationships, maintain those relationships, and have the confidence of, of the people that you’re trying to build these relationships with if you’re going to be successful out here.

Rico: [00:24:50] For sure. The, so you do have a lot of candidates out there running and everyone has different issues that they’re. Issue, if you will, to a degree. You’ve been talking a little bit more, about collaborating with the DA, the police departments on the, using his existing task force, not necessarily creating new ones, but collaborating with them on their task force, with violent crime. But you’ve also mentioned mental health.

Keybo: [00:25:19] Such as something to that. I’m not opposed to create a new task force. As I stated earlier, you know, I was the commander of the drug task force. So I understand the importance of task forces. And what I didn’t mention was, was that, I was also assigned to the FBI drug task force for a period of time. So I understand the importance of task force and, if we’re going to get some other things accomplished when you don’t have, you know, the manpower. If you don’t have, you know, the funding task forces other ways to go.

Rico: [00:25:57] So Sheriff’s department can work with them.

Keybo: [00:25:59] We can. I can, yeah. I’d already said that long before. I hear now that the governor’s talking about human trafficking, but when I first started, as I talked about taking people that are participating in the, in the two 87G program, now, taking them out of that program and, and assigning them to. You know, any type of federal task force or a local task force that deals with human trafficking.

Rico: [00:26:22] And two 87G for those people that may not know, has to deal with the ice. Taking illegals off the street, arresting them, and you’re doing such, your local police doing ice work without getting paid for it. But using local police to be able to, to do federal work.

Keybo: [00:26:42] That’s correct.

Rico: [00:26:43] Which causes problems. Also locally. I mean, I know some people say, well, they’re illegal. They should be removed, but 12 million illegal aliens in the United States. I mean, you know, not, they’re not all going to be shipped home no matter how anyone looks at that. It’s just never going to happen.

Keybo: [00:26:59] That’s not going to happen.

Rico: [00:27:00] And they, a big part of not only the economy, but of our community. You were talking about. So you can, you know, I’m sure there were kids that may have been from illegal parents that were playing football, you know, that you might’ve dealt with.

Keybo: [00:27:12] Absolutely. No, absolutely.

Rico: [00:27:14] They are people, right.

Keybo: [00:27:17] And you know, some of the kids, I didn’t even know that they were coming from an illegal parent situations like that until I got into this race. Some of the best kids that I had. You know, that their parents said, you know, came here and they were not documented here. And, and, you know, and I’ve spoken to some of them and I talk about how the hardship of it was, I didn’t even know it, you know, I mean, I was gone. I had gone on back to doing my own little thing and then even know what those situations was really about. But basically, you know, immigration is a federal, it’s a federal law. It’s a federal issue. And you know, somewhat. People
talk about what, you don’t want to enforce the law. It’s not that I don’t want enforce the law. I’m going to enforce what is mandated by the state of Georgia, you know? And that is not mandated by the state of Georgia. That’s an agreement that the current share of Butch Conway entered into with ice.

Rico: [00:28:15] And that’s also a volunteer agreement, right?

Keybo: [00:28:17] Yes, it is.

Rico: [00:28:18] So we don’t have to, Sheriff’s department does not have to enter that. Then of course, tend to, they chose that to that agreement.

Keybo: [00:28:25] You look at, I think, at last count there was 90 agencies in the nation that participated in two 87G. That’s 90 agencies, 90 agencies, and three of them that I’m familiar with is here in the state of Georgia. Maybe more, I had heard that there was as many as five, but I can, you know, tell your authority. That tells you that it’s not a mandated thing. It’s a, it’s an agreement by choice.

Rico: [00:28:58] That doesn’t stop, you know, if, if, if the police arrest where you serve in your arrest an illegal that committed a felony, they will be deported. I mean, that’s just the nature of, they will, you know, you’re not talking, we’re not talking about felons necessarily, the majority of who was picked up on enough felons. They’re not criminal offenders. you know, traffic ticket. Everyone gets traffic. I got a traffic ticket once. I mean, I was going for the $3 Starbucks. I ended up getting a $100 a ticket. Five miles over the speed limit and it was shot down to 30, but whatever.

Keybo: [00:29:33] I always say Starbucks is expensive.

Rico: [00:29:37] That day it was very expensive. But, so, so that would be one of the things that you would, if you were elected sheriff, that would be one of the things you would remove.

Keybo: [00:29:46] I’ve always said that will be one of the first things that I would do is just, you know, take, the Sheriff’s department out of that particular agreement with ice.

Rico: [00:29:57] Okay. The, the, some of the other things that you talked about also is, and I, and I see there’s a problem with like, businesses hiring people. There’s ghost employees. There’s not enough people to work, restaurants and stuff happening all the time. How would you attract and retain qualified niches, qualified staff at their first staff that represents the community. How would you do that? Are they enough people to do that with?

Keybo: [00:30:20] Of course. And I may get in trouble for saying this, but I’m gonna go ahead and say it. You know, we talk about, you know, how low, the unemployment rate is today, okay? And they boast about the fact that you know that there’s jobs here, but you’ve got to ask yourself
what type of jobs are there? You know? And when you see people at a certain level that they’re working two jobs and they still can’t make ends meet, well, it’s good to sit in here and boast about the fact that I got jobs. But you know, they’re not making a decent livable wage on what they’re doing. That is Sheriff’s departments nowhere near. And that is, that’s been legendary ever since I’ve been in law enforcement starting in 1983. But you see, you know, one thing that they would come back and talk about, what we did a study and the study says that, you know, money is not the most important thing. You know, good work environment, good supervision, good, you know, and they would give you a laundry list of all of the goods. And somewhere down towards the middle of the bottom is salary. And benefits, which, you know, and I was like, you know, I said, no, you know, I’m a person out here. You know, when I started with the County police department, I was making less than $13,000 a year. So money and salary was important. You know, especially when I started having kids and I was like, no. So what I say on that is, is that, you know, when you look at, and right now use the city of Atlanta is, as a comparative agency. You know, the city of Atlanta right now have a waiting list of people trying to get into the city. And what happened was the mirror changed their, their benefit package there. So Atlanta is one of the highest paid agencies in this area. Gwinnett county’s at the bottom. As larger, you know, and as good as this County is, we’re at the bottom. If we got some of them on, it’s fine. As officers and deputies in the nation, these, these are, some of them was fine as individuals. You’ll ever see everyone across, you know. And I know that there is, bad things that happened from time to time, but for the most part, they deserve more. So in order to get them, the best. You got to give them the best. So we’re going to have to look at these benefit packages. I hear what we’re paying people.

Rico: [00:32:45] This is true. What I hear that when a police, for example, they train through the police Academy is employees or people. That would eventually be police officers. But then one Sunday, after a year or two, they leave and they, after they get some experience, they get the schooling. They leave and then go to other counties that have insurance. So we can’t retain them.

Keybo: [00:33:07] Our retention races, you know, when you talk about, you got over 150 vacancies.

Rico: [00:33:15] So you have the budgets. Supposedly there’s budget for it and they can’t fill the spot.

Keybo: [00:33:19] You can’t fill it.

Rico: [00:33:20] So you would think the money’s there, you can’t fill it. So maybe you should pay a little bit more, reduce the amount of they can see, and then you probably should be able to fill it.

Keybo: [00:33:29] We could, but I think it’s gonna take more than just a little bit. We’re going to have to seriously consider changing what we’re looking at as far as the benefit package.

Rico: [00:33:42] These are like to me, law forces at the same way. To me, print stories where people that are in. Well, the services, and they still might have to get food stamps. They may still have to do, other services from the federal government to help them meet and speak in homes with the sheriff police, fire. They’re all in harm’s way. I don’t understand why we can sit there and try to pay them less.

Keybo: [00:34:10] I think we as a society is looking at a lot of things socially wrong. We don’t take care of who and what we should be taking care of. There’s no reason why, you know, a veteran should have to worry about being homeless, you know, finding affordable housing or, finding good quality health care.

Rico: [00:34:38] It’s almost a joke. They know that it’s bad.

Keybo: [00:34:42] So when we sit down and what gets me is people, man, they want to put up this front showing how patriotic that they are. But yet, and still, you know, we got people out here and they want to, you know, Oh, it’s so sad that we have, you know, that some police officers out here committing suicide. Well, you know, what, what are we doing to change some of the things others in addition to the outside pressures that they have to deal with on a day to day basis. So you take a person and you put them in theater over there on ward, then he comes back, he’s got to worry about. You know, we’re spending, there’s no live. I mean, we, we fundamentally have this thing wrong. And you know, and when we look at. You know, even a healthcare situation, you know, and, even for Gwinnett County, and I know I’m gonna get in trouble for saying this, but I’m gonna go ahead and say it. You know, in other countries, they take care of the elderly, you know, they, they make sure that they’re taken care of. Here, it’s almost like they don’t want to, you know, once you retire, they don’t want to take care of you. So they make, you know, your health care so high, you know, and other things, you know, they’re specialists of it, you know, and it’s just like. I put my time in, I’ve, you know, have served this County or this country and here we are. Now, you know, that I need, and there is nobody there for you.

Rico: [00:36:06] So it’s amazing that we constantly do this, not only with our military, but with the police and fire and even teachers. I mean, these are people that protect us.

Keybo: [00:36:18] That’s correct.

Rico: [00:36:18] In the, spend more time with our children than we do the escort. And yet we don’t treat them willingly.

Keybo: [00:36:25] And we don’t.

Rico: [00:36:28] I’m sorry. We can see that. Sorry. It’s just like.

Keybo: [00:36:31] This all falls outside of the rails of the Sheriff’s department, but you know, but it’s still real, you know? And another thing too, you know, if I’m elected sheriff, I want to work with the board of commissioners. And you know, if you got people coming into Gwinnett County that wants to, you know, develop homes, okay, what’s wrong with a certain percentage of those homes being set aside for law enforcement at a reduced rate that we can afford?

Rico: [00:37:03] You know, that’s interesting cause I heard someone else talk about doing that with developers, having them, if they’re going to ask for rezoning, right? The high intensity that this should really, because everyone talks about affordable housing, but the real trick is how do you force that into the marketplace? Cause there are expensive places to look in. The property is going to be expensive unless you, unless government can do something about it and the worker that’s going to be working, the, your police force, you know, locality, like Bobcat can’t live in Bobcat. They might be coming from coming maybe with somewhere else. You know.

Keybo: [00:37:40] I know that they have somewhat of a pilot program like that that’s going on over in the city of Atlanta. But you know, what I’m talking about is, you know, being able to be, you know, more diverse than more than different communities. So, not just then. You know, an identified area, but anywhere that you know that you have a development that you know, we can look at, you know, getting officers there because you know, it’s safer. It’s a crime deterrent to have either a patrol car or a deputy’s car or, you know, just folks knowing that, Hey, there’s a, you know, law enforcement on the, in the community, you know, that’s, that’s worth the money of having security there.

Rico: [00:38:32] For sure. And most police drive their own cars home and stuff.

Keybo: [00:38:35] In Gwinnett County, the police officers doing most of the, not most of the deputies, but ones that are signed in certain areas drive their cars.

Rico: [00:38:44] I had last about six, eight months ago maybe. I had the, last year actually I was, I spoke to a couple of witness superior court judge candidates, and we talked about technology in the courtroom. That would really make things work faster, especially if you have, you, if you could do sort of a FaceTime type of deal where you don’t have to come down to the court. All we’re asking for is a disposition of moving things through a different date. There’s no reason to take up court time for that. Okay. How would technology the internet, the approach to law enforcement in the past decade. Do you think that the Sheriff’s department has gone far enough with the use of technology, or has it, or, or has it not? I mean, what would you do there with that?

Keybo: [00:39:31] One thing that I did have a discussion with, it was about the wait time that attorneys have the have or use, at certain times over the jail waiting to see clients. And part of that is because of the shortage of manpower at the jail or maybe other things. But they talk about a wait time. Some of them talked about it up to three hours. I haven’t had to wait before they can get in and get the interview of the client. One thing I would like to take a look at as far
as technology goes is, is that if there was a system, a secure system, but what we could put a client in front of a camera or whatever it would be, and remote, that car, you know, the interface with their attorney so that the attorney would have a set block of time, you know, at three o’clock on Friday. I know I got a time, you know, I have my candidate, you know, in the pot so that he can, you know, we can have, the secure conversation, secure conversation, and I could, you know, then this interview with my client, that’s a time saver.

Rico: [00:40:43] Now with that, obviously there’s some complications there for privacy and whether that recording is deleted later and stuff and not used for law enforcement than.

Keybo: [00:40:54] It wouldn’t be necessarily a recording. It’s not a recorded video conference.

Rico: [00:41:00] Do you see any other uses online uses or do you see more online crime that the Sheriff’s department may have to deal with?

Keybo: [00:41:08] I don’t know, as far as what the Sheriff’s department itself would be. I will like, you know, take a look and make sure that, you know, we have, you know, up to date technology as far as, inside of the jails, especially in the courthouse. You know, courthouses are becoming more of a target for, you know, certain, certain things. So, you know, you want to make sure that your technology is up to par there, technology around the courthouse, so that you can get, you know, more real time information in the event that you do have an incident either at or around the courthouse. Yeah, I do see a greater need for technology.

Rico: [00:41:54] Okay. It’s, it’s interesting in the city of Peachtree corners, for example, is putting in, license ID cameras and also facial recognition cameras. Just to be used to be retained. To possibly be used in case there was a felony act or something like that in the community. So it is getting more of a, of a cyber, you know, having cameras out there and, and, being able to track things. Fiscally responsible decision making, reducing costly lawsuit liability. That’s one of the things that you, you, you spoke about it. How would you speak to that then? As far as that?

Keybo: [00:42:37] A lot, I don’t know if you looked at the news, but back here a few days ago, Randy Travis was reporting on, on a case of a lawsuit where a deputy was just arrested by the FBI, and he’s being prosecuted federally, for force, excessive force on an inmate, a mentally disabled inmate inside of the jail. One thing that he talked about was, was that he had checked on the calls because there’s, there’s so many. I think right now we’re up to about 75 plaintiffs. That’s involved in a law, in lawsuits over there at the Sheriff’s department for either excessive use of force, wrongful death, and there are some other ones. I don’t know what the other titles are, but I do know right about now you’ve got about 75 plaintiffs that that’s a, that’s a tremendous number of people.

Rico: [00:43:31] And worse than has 250 odd people, right?

Keybo: [00:43:33] So, well, or no, no, I think, yeah, they got almost a thousand folks. Yeah. But see, here’s the deal. You know, when you look at not only the calls that, it’s costing the County attorney’s to defending his lawsuits. You also bring in outside attorneys, and Travis reported that he checked back in August and at the time, back in August, the amount that the County has spent on these lawsuits. Outside attorneys was over $500,000 so that’s what, six months ago, almost six months ago. So you know that, that tab is rolling. We spent millions of dollars out here defending these lawsuits, and then if we lose, then you’re paying out multiple million dollars to these plaintiffs. I hear, and it starts from the top, you know. When those lawsuits first started, he did nothing to change the practices of that rapid response team that was operating inside of that jail.

Rico: [00:44:45] So you’re saying possibly training?

Keybo: [00:44:48] Oh, well, first of all, it starts with your hiring. Who do you have? Who do you have in charge? As a sheriff, who do I bring in and who do I put in charge? And, what is the mindset and the philosophy that we’re going to go at and how do we deal with conflict and how do we deal with, you know, with people, man, that are, that are you know, combative or mentally challenged in there. You know, when you look at it, probably 85 to 90% of the people, that is incarcerated, you know, they have some sort of mental disability. You know, you think about who goes into a jail and start fighting. So, you know, we’ve got to have a better screening process of folks that are going in, you know, if there are services that we need to provide to people, you know, as far as putting them in special areas, you know, we’ve got to train our deputies better with, you know, more a CIT training and crisis individual type training.

Rico: [00:45:45] Then that doesn’t this also come back to paying more money to paying the right salary base to attract the right candidates?

Keybo: [00:45:52] It does, but you know, even to get those salaries up to par and to get the right people in, you know, you’re talking about, you know, three to four years. So it may take a whole term to get that, but what I’m saying is we have to change the culture of that place immediately. They want, I’ve got to have a plan going in there to how we’re going to reduce and how we’re going to deal with conflict resolution inside that jail. How do we deal with a physical force? How do we report physical force? When do we use physical force? And how do we evaluate fairly if we’re using proper force. So I can’t, you know, some people will sit there and say, well, you know, you got, you know, it’s going to take you time. Well, yeah, you’re right. It is going to take time, but I don’t have time to sit back and wait until some of these things take care of themselves. We’ve got to have a plan from day one going in the door. What are we going to do?

Rico: [00:46:50] How long is the Sheriff’s term?

Keybo: [00:46:52] Four years.

Rico: [00:46:53] Sounds like a long time, but.

Keybo: [00:46:55] It’s in the blink of an eye. Yes. Would be like, especially when you get our age, man, four years go by real quick.

Rico: [00:47:02] Especially when you’re on a mission and you want to change things. Four years may not be enough time to do it.

Keybo: [00:47:07] Well, I plan hopefully, you know, my plan is, is to bring the right people in, from the start and, you know, people that I’ve got the confidence that it’s going to hit the ground on it.

Rico: [00:47:20] We’ve been with Keybo Taylor talking about his run for sheriff, his background, where he’s grown up, who he is and his faith. And I’m glad to have you on here. I appreciate you coming out. So why don’t you, I normally do this on candidate interviews give, give us a two minute, two minute thing, a two minute elevator speech to go ask for that vote. Tell us why we need to vote.

Keybo: [00:47:47] For sure.

Rico: [00:47:49] And tell us when the election is, all that.

Keybo: [00:47:52] You know. One more time, man. My name is Keybo Taylor and I’m running for sheriff of Gwinnett County, the election I have a primary okay. The primary is in May, May the 19th, 2020 this year. I’m asking for, I need your support. I need for people that if you believe in what we’re talking about, and if you want to get behind my campaign, go onto my website, go to my social media pages. If you like it, please repost it. Spread the word out as best as you can. What I tell people is, is that, you know, if you support me, find me 10 more people. And then ask those ten people to find me ten more people, you know, you know, it’s kinda like the old chain letters, man. We just gonna keep it going. But you can find my information at Keybo For Sheriff and you spell out for sheriff.com. KeyboForSheriff.com. Then, I’m also on social media. I’m on Facebook, I’m on Instagram, and, I believe you might even be able to find me on Twitter. I’m not really sure about the Twitter.

Rico: [00:49:14] I know Facebook and Instagram for sure. I’ll tag you on that one, great. We’ve been with Keybo Taylor, I appreciate you coming out. Keybo thank you, and good luck with getting the word out and telling your story.

Keybo: [00:49:27] Thank you very much. Thanks for having me.

Rico: [00:49:29] Thank you.

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