Mobile real estate agent Charlie Plyler admits it’s cliché for a political candidate to run for public office for the future of children, but with two young adult sons who are entering the workforce at a time when “the economy is in the doldrums,” he said that is essentially the crux of his campaign.
Plyler is among a group of five Republicans hoping to succeed Jim Barton in the Alabama House of Representatives for District 104.
“I’m originally from Mississippi but I’ve been in Mobile for 20 years, 17 of those have been in District 104,” he said. “I moved here because I had an opportunity to be self-employed in financial services and remember a time when people had a much easier time of standing on their own. But unfortunately (the weak economy) is the new norm. In Alabama, we’re headed in the right direction but my focus is on getting out of way of small business. They’ve done a good job of bringing in large companies, but with a higher quality of life and emphasis in tourism, we’ll attract more people and have a larger tax base.”
Prior to his current position as agent and Internet coordinator for Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate, Plyler held management positions at Tamron Honda and Treadwell Honda, he said. As a state representative, he said he will also focus on advocacy for autistic children, which has affected several of his friends.
“The numbers change in a daily basis, but right now about one in 88 children are born with autism,” he said. “Those kids have an opportunity to lead a pretty normal life with early childhood intervention and therapies but it’s not something that is normally covered with insurance or money readily available. A lot of times for children with autism in Mobile or Baldwin counties, they are put in special needs areas with kids with more severe disabilities, but often times they just learn a little bit differently and need a teacher trained for that. I have friends with autistic kids I have watched grow and I’ve seen the difference therapy made. But it’s not just a moral thing it’s a financial thing. If those children cannot take care of themselves somebody’s going to have to and they could wind up being a burden on the state.”
Plyler said he appreciated Barton’s 13 years of service in the house with a conservative voting record and work on the state budget, but as a representative himself, Plyler said he would reintroduce legislation for term limits and would pledge to not leave in the middle of a term.
“We’ve been spending a fortune on special elections and many people are going through election fatigue,” he said. “Term limits are important and a bill almost went through a committee last year but died on a 7-6 vote. I think three consecutive terms, for 12 years, to get in there and do your job and leave, personally, that’s all anyone should be afforded.”
More information about Plyler is available at charlieplyler.com.
“My whole background is about being a mediator,” he said. “I’m not necessarily the most visible person, but I get people together to get the job done and I can go to Montgomery and work with either side. If we don’t focus on some the social issues that get all the headlines and just concentrate on what is right for Alabama, we can make a difference.”
The special primary election in District 104 will be Tuesday, Oct. 15. If necessary, a special primary runoff election will be held Tuesday, Dec. 3. If not, the general election will be Dec. 10.
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