It’s probably not surprising to anyone who regularly reads our paper to see that Ocean View is the subject of our editorial this week. After all, the town has seen discord between council members, staff, residents and, yes, newspaper reporters over recent years.
But this is more of an observation than anything else.
The filing deadline for next month’s planned town council election has come and gone, and incumbent Bob Lawless will go in unopposed to continue representing the town’s 4th District. While Lawless has rarely been the centerpiece of scorn in the town, it is surprising to us that none of the people who oppose the current town council sought to run against him. Lawless, on the other hand, is not as shocked.
“We’ve gotten a lot done in the last three years,” said Lawless. “We’ve gotten some drainage work done, we’ve undertaken a program of maintaining our streets; and, I think, perhaps more important, the tenor of our council meetings has changed from rancorous to something much more civil.”
There is no arguing that last point, as the current Ocean View Town Council appears to be comprised of individuals who get along and often share a vision for the future direction of the town. However, we also know that there is a significant number of people in town who don’t agree at all with what the current council often does, and that’s why it’s a bit surprising to us that nobody has thrown his or her hat into the ring to try to create change.
Now, there are two thoughts on this circulating around our office. The first one is that people genuinely like the job Lawless has done for the town and see no reason to rock the boat. The second is that few, if any, of the vocal opponents of the current council reside in that district. Both of these make sense.
We know that there is still discord in the town because we talk with a lot of people on all sides every day. However, we wonder if the fact that the current council seems to do quite a bit less in-fighting than before has caused those in the middle to be less frustrated with the way the town is currently operating. Food for thought.
Either way, we congratulate Bob Lawless for his upcoming three-year term, and for the sake of the town, hope it is a productive three years.
One election we know will not be unopposed will be the one to fill George H. Bunting’s seat in the state senate. The only problem is we don’t know yet who will be competing. We’ll keep our eyes and ears open, and ask that you all do the same for us!