Pike County Times
The Pike County Times, PO Box 843, Zebulon, Georgia 30295. You can donate through PayPal at the link on the bottom of the page. Becky Watts: Phone # 770-468-7583 editor(@)pikecountytimes.com
Welcome to Pike County Times.com

This online news website is owned and operated by Becky Watts. If you enjoy reading Pike County Times, consider buying an advertisement for your business or sending a donation to support the only free online newspaper in Pike County. Donations can be sent to: The Pike County Times, PO Box 843, Zebulon, Georgia 30295. Click here to donate through PayPal. Thanks for supporting Pike County's only free online newspaper!

Commissioner of Insurance - State of Georgia

This is a four (4) year seat that is currently held by Ralph Hudgens who is not running for a third term. Republican Challenger Jim Beck defeated Challengers Jay Florence and Tracy Jordan in the Republican Primary.

Democratic Challenger Janice Laws defeated Challenger Cindy Zeldin in the Democratic Primary.

Republican Challenger Jim Beck will be running against Democratic Challenger Janice Laws in November. winner of the Democratic Primary in November and the winner of this office will be decided in the November election.

Jim Beck, Republican

Insurance is not exciting, but it has been said that insurance is the heartbeat of the free enterprise system. One cannot buy a home, open a business or even legally drive a car without it, so insurance touches nearly everybody. My first job out of high school was calling potential customers for Carroll Realty and Insurance in Carrollton, and that experience was the beginning of a relationship I have with not only that local agency but with insurance consumers to this day; it was in that work that I discovered and developed a particular passion for insurance. So, I have been in and around the industry for over 30 years – in both the public and private sectors. I have even written a book on the subject: Standing Up: A Georgia Insurance Consumer’s Survival Guide.

You probably do not have to go outside your own home to realize how big a role insurance plays in your life, because, no doubt, it is the subject of many kitchen table conversations all over Georgia. Just one example of this circumstance is automobile insurance, as so many Georgia families struggle to cover dramatic rate increases. I speak to many civic clubs and professional organizations throughout the year, and everywhere I go, people talk about double-digit auto insurance rate hikes. Georgia has been #1 or #2 in the nation for auto rate increases for the last three years. Nationally, insurance customers faced an average 5.6% increase, while Georgians absorbed a 12.2% increase. Even insurance company executives will tell you this rate of increase is not sustainable; as with any business, raising prices cannot be the only answer.

In addition, my background includes having been Deputy Insurance Commissioner, where I worked closely with investigators handling tens of thousands of consumer inquiries. While I was leading the Consumer Services Division, we returned an estimated $36 million to consumers. Our team was successful for policyholders, but the calls we received from families struggling with health insurance companies would break your heart. It was frustrating to hear from a mother desperately trying to get a prescription approved for her sick child or to get a procedure pre-certified. I hope that Congress will return more control of health care insurance to the states, so that Georgia can more directly help consumers.

I like to make things work better, and my public and private sector experience guides my vision for comprehensive change in the Insurance Commissioner’s office. The first step in making any good organization great is knowing the subject matter and committing to aligning behavior to the mission, and I believe my background will allow me to be a Day One Commissioner.

I humbly believe that, as Insurance Commissioner, I can help improve the lives of average Georgians, as well as stabilize the market, and that is why I’m running. To get involved, please call my campaign at 1-844-218-3785, or visit our website at www.JimBeckforGeorgia.com.


I am seeking to become the next Insurance and Fire Safety Commissioner because it is time for the People of Georgia to have a voice in the Office. The issues of escalating Automobile Insurance Premiums, Reimbursement Reform, and Customer Advocacy must be addressed to help the Citizens of our State. As a Pharmacist and Pharmacy Owner for decades, I have served the needs of many in the Jackson County area. I am a Candidate because the people I have assisted during the past 27 years have encouraged me to use my passion and determination to help others across Georgia.

My Business experience has given me the opportunity to have a unique perspective of Insurance Issues experienced by the average Georgian. Since I am not an Industry Insider or a Career Politician, I view the Office from the perspective of a Business Owner and Consumer. I have experience managing Staff and am fiscally conservative. Although I am not an “Industry Expert”, I know how to surround myself with Experts. Additionally, I am not beholding to Special Interest Groups like my Competitors as evidenced by their Campaign Contributions. Therefore, I am the most qualified to represent the interests of the People.

It is my expectation to successfully petition the Legislature to repeal the 2008 File and Use Legislation to allow for oversight and approval by me before Insurance Rates are passed to the consumers of Georgia. I plan to tighten the reins on Companies with delays in Reimbursement Payments by enforcing existing rules and penalties for Companies which do not reimburse in a timely fashion. The Consumers, the Individuals paying for Insurance, have a right to an impartial mediator in the event of Insurance Complaints. Jordan for Georgia will make certain that promises are kept!

There is a need for Reimbursement Reform in Healthcare. The practices of allowing Insurance Companies to delay payment for goods and services provided by Healthcare Professionals is hurting everyone across Georgia. When Contracts are not honored with Healthcare Businesses, the delays in payments or non-payment negatively impact the ability of that Provider to stay in Business and serve their Patients. These practices have led to many Independent Pharmacies, Physician Offices, and Rural Hospitals closing their doors. In small Municipalities, this can be a matter of life and death for Patients when available Physicians and Hospitals are located far away.

I am a 1990 Graduate of UGA College of Pharmacy and am a licensed Pharmacist. I am an Independent Pharmacy Owner; I owned West Jackson Medicine Center in Hoschton from June 1996 until July 2015 when I merged with another Independent Pharmacy (Jackson Pharmacy) in Hoschton. I am also a licensed Realtor with Winfield Realty Group and was a Hoschton City Council Member until March 2018. My adult life has been spent as a Community Servant. I have been an Advocate for my Patients and will use my experience to stand up for the People of Georgia.

Jordan for Georgia will make them keep their promises!


Janice Laws, Democrat


[Note from the Editor: All candidates received an email for information from Pike County Times. I will continue to update this page as information is received.]

Updated 5.29.18