“The only explanation for creating an elected office immediately after an election is that you don’t want the people to be part of the process,” Sykes said. “I am a firm believer that all power in our government comes from the consent of the governed and that the people should choose their leaders. It is sad that critics did not care enough to read the three page bill or two page amendment and notice that the people were being cut out of the process in both of these prior versions.”
State Rep. Aaron Stiles, an attorney who practices in Cleveland County and had worked to get the new position, said the move is good for the citizens and businesses. It also makes fiscal sense as the office costs $1.6 million a year to operate.
“Everybody had ideas on how to get it done. I give Sen. Sykes a lot of credit. It not only saves money but it saves businesses a lot of time and saves our jail overcrowding in Cleveland County,” he said.