Three candidates seek District 2 Republican nomination 

Published 9:00 am Friday, May 3, 2024

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A trio of candidates are seeking the Republican nomination for the Troup County Board of Commissioners District 2 seat. 

Candidates April Loftin and James Thrailkill are challenging incumbent Ellis Cadenhead for the party nomination on May 21. The winner will go on to challenge Democrat Andrew Moody for the seat in November, who is running unopposed for the Democrat nomination.

All three Republican candidates made their cases for the position during the election forum hosted by the LaGrange-Troup County Chamber of Commerce on April 23.

The forum was organized by the LaGrange-Troup County Chamber of Commerce and live-streamed by The LaGrange Daily News. Videos of the forum in its entirety, including other races, are available on both the Chamber and LDN Facebook pages.

Cadenhead is finishing his second term on the Troup County Board of Commissioners. He is retired from Newnan Utilities and the Coweta Water Authority and currently owns a small cattle farm.

Loftin is the owner of Panache 1833 Salon in LaGrange. She said she started doing hair in 1998 after earning her cosmetology license. 

Thrailkill is the owner of West Georgia Glass in LaGrange and has previously served on the Planning and Zoning Board and the Elections Board.

Each candidate was given 90 seconds for each question, with two minutes for an opening and closing statement.

Some of the questions covered in the forum include:


Do you think there’s a problem with roadside litter, abandoned properties and overall blight in Troup County and what can we do about it?

“I think the sanitation issue that has come up and was voted on has definitely caused an issue with litter on the side of the road,” Loftin said. “I’m not familiar with the [abandoned properties] issue at this moment. But obviously, it is a concern that I will definitely look into.”

“You do see litter on the road. I wish people would take more responsibility of their own to keep it from the roads and blowing out of the vehicles,” Thrailkill said.

“I do see buildings that are, I guess you could say, a blight. I wouldn’t call it a blight. But some people have their structure there. It could be sentimental to them or whatever. But if it does become a hazard, I think it does need to be taken care of as far as safety hazards.”

“The problem with roadside litter, it’s mainly due to the citizens not realizing it or they’re doing it purposely. We do have some roads that once they’re picked up, go back two days later, it’s the same situation. Education needs to be stressed much more starting in the school system from the standpoint of not littering,” Cadenhead said. “We do pick up, I know, four times a year. We have some areas that are much worse. The sheriff’s department helps us out along that line as well. But to me, we need to start educating children to educate their parents from the standpoint of litter.”

Cadenhead said he only knows of a couple of abandoned houses and they are working with the Marshal’s Office to alleviate the issues.


The County recently enacted an ordinance on short-term rentals. How do you feel about the ordinance? And how should the county balance individual property rights with the effects of those rights on our neighbors?

“Being on the planning and zoning board over the last seven years, we saw those applications coming forward. We had a lot of opposition to those cases when these things were put into certain neighborhoods. The opposition would come forward when we saw the case, or the application, and the problem, a lot of the things we’ve run into was that the individuals that were wanting to bring that here were from out of town,” Thrailkill said.

“Some of the things that were on there was, it was going from noise outside noise to 10 o’clock. One of the things that was changed was from daylight to dark. Things like that were just mainly to help the citizens in those neighborhoods and throughout the whole county. It doesn’t say you can’t have a short-term rental. It just puts restrictions on it so that you can protect the citizens because we had very lax short-term rental standards,” Thrailkill said.

“People buy property for their long-term residences or some type of rental house. But short-term rental seems to be a problem from the standpoint of always changing and being somebody new in the house next door continuously,” Cadenhead said.

“The residents that came in when voicing their opinion. That’s the reason the ordinance was created like it is. But there again, if it is too strict, we can take a look at it and look at it from the standpoint of what needs to be changed and if it needs to be changed,” Cadenhead said.

“I’ve actually looked over the policy a lot. And I really think it’s pretty extreme. I believe that any financial advisor would tell you that probably one of the safest investments that you would have would be rental investment or real estate, limiting a person to owning one short-term rental per owner, I think that’s pretty extreme of our government to put that out there. Limiting the number of days that it can be rented, I think is pretty extreme. Also, I think a lot of these issues should be left up to the HOA of the environment that could be there,” Loftin said.


Last year the county made the decision to move to a single franchise provider for garbage collection in unincorporated Troup County. Do you think that was the right move for the county to make? And should we continue with the way we were managing garbage collection? Or should we consider changes in the future?

“Well, that’s interesting that you would ask that question since I voted no all the way through. I do not agree with a single franchise. I think it should be the property owner’s opportunity to address and pick which garbage sanitation service that they would like to use. In the future, I know it’s something that needs to be looked at from the standpoint of service. How we do that it’s more or less an automatic renewal unless there’s a problem. Right now, I think if we took a vote today, it would still be a three to two vote and we couldn’t change it,” Cadenhead said.

“I think the garbage issue definitely, like I’ve stated before, kind of woke up the sleeping giant and the community. I think the garbage outlook from districts that are in I guess more of a city limit has a different opinion from the county and the districts on the outside. So it has definitely been an issue,” Loftin said. 

“I’m very confused with being a local business owner of why our administration chose to go outside of our area and decided to go with a company out of Dothan, Alabama. That was something that was a little bit unusual to me. I like promoting local businesses. I think we should fight for local businesses, I think mandating anybody to have to be told what to do as far as their service is completely unconstitutional,” Loftin said.

“The trash was a big topic. I wish it had been looked at from a business point of view because there was already a company here that had built their business up and was supplying a good portion of District 2 pickup. They were making money at it. The company that was asked to come from Alabama came with intentions of making money at it,” Thrailkill said. “Getting the one company from Alabama to do the service. I do not agree with a government telling its citizens where they have to spend their money. I think that’s a slippery slope. I do not agree with it.”