JOHNS ISLAND, S.C. (WCBD) – A historic election next week will determine who will represent Johns Island for the first time on Charleston City Council.
“Having somebody in your backyard fighting for you, is important. And so, Johns Islanders want to make sure that they’ve got a voice at the table,” said Jermaine Husser, the Executive Director of Our Lady of Mercy Community Outreach.
Stephanie Hodges, Jim McBride, and Bill Antonucci are in the running for the newly formed Charleston City Council District Three seat. They participated in a forum Monday night at the Our Lady of Mercy Community Outreach on Johns Island.
The upcoming election marks the first time Johns Island will have its own district after a new redistricting map was approved last year. The island is currently part of District Five, which also covers parts of West Ashley.
The candidates took questions from neighbors and shared their platforms.
“That’s the biggest thing, I think is the traffic. Something has got to be done about that. But something’s got to be done about the sprawl as well. The building is out of control and there’s no infrastructure to support it,” Antonucci told News 2.
Antonucci has a military background and worked as a technical instructor. He describes himself as a “tenacious fighter” who doesn’t take no for an answer.
McBride is a U.S. Marine of 25 years, which he said gave him experience in policy making and infrastructure – something he plans to focus on if elected.
“We have to focus, and I am laser focused on getting infrastructure fixed so people can get on and off the island quickly because our taxpayers are burning through gas money and time every single morning trying to get to work or get their kids to school,” McBride said.
Hodges is a public health professional and is the owner of a policy-consulting business. She told News 2 she is good at finding solutions to issues through policy, and at relationship building.
“I’ve lived here for several years, and I see the issues facing our district every single day. Traffic, flooding, development, and I have a plan to address all of those. Not only do we need to find short term solutions, but we also need a long term comprehensive, strategic plan for our area and our district,” Hodges explained.
The current District Three seat on the peninsula was eliminated because of the new redistricting plan. It is currently held by Councilman Jason Sakran.