Belcher chooses city post, resigning deputy job
When newly elected city officials in Brookhaven are sworn into office June 28, Ward One Alderman-elect, Randy Belcher will take the oath, effectively leaving behind a 15-year career in law enforcement.
Belcher was faced with the dilemma of foregoing his position in City Hall or leaving his job as deputy for the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office after it was learned that a separation of powers clause in the Mississippi Constitution prevents an individual from serving with “core powers” in two of the three branches of government.
As a deputy in the LCSO, Belcher’s arrest authority was a “core power” in the executive branch while his service on the board of alderman would give him legislative “core powers.”
“After doing all the research, it showed that there would be a conflict of interest,” he said.
But when a decision had to be made, Belcher went with his new city post.
“I thought about my ward, and I thought about all the people that voted for me, and I didn’t want to let them down,” Belcher said in an interview Friday.
“They were committed to me, I wanted to be committed to them.”
Belcher said his decision to leave the LCSO will result in a $25,000 pay cut, but he is confident the overall outcome will be beneficial.
“I just think that this will be better for me,” he said. “The downside is I have to leave the [sheriff’s department], but the upside is I get to do what I have been working to accomplish for over 16 years.”
Belcher’s first attempt at achieving the Ward One alderman’s position was during the 1997 election when he lost to Dorsey Cameron.
The two candidates faced off again this election with Belcher beating the four-term incumbent in both the primary and the runoff that followed.
“In life you’re going to win some and lose some,” Belcher said. “16 years ago I took my loss and went home. Now I’m ready to hit the ground running. I’m excited.”
“I will still be Ward One alderman,” he continued, emphasizing his commitment.
“That’s not going to change until I am voted out.”