Happy with the time he’s spent on the town council, Ocean View resident Tom Maly recently filed to continue to serve as councilman for District 3.
Maly, joined the council in January 2016, following the passing of former councilman Tom Sheeran. He said he has enjoyed his year on council so much that he decided to run to serve the Town for an additional three years.
The Town is doing a lot of positive things, said Maly, noting the Concerts in the Park in the summer months, which provide free entertainment to the community in John West Park.
“Last year, we had Cops & Goblins, which was huge. It couldn’t have been better. That shows the community supports the police — they came out to that event. There were over a thousand people there. It’s just a very, very nice place to live. It’s close enough to the beach but far enough from the beach as well.”
Maly, who has bachelor’s and master’s degrees in sociology from Loyola College and the University of Baltimore, retired from the Baltimore Police Department after 24 years. Maly then became director of public safety at the Community College of Baltimore County. He went into law enforcement after serving in the military police in the U.S. Army.
Maly and his wife, Katherine, who have been married for 47 years, moved to Hunter’s Run 14 years ago, after visiting friends living in Savannah’s Landing.
“It’s just a great place to live. The town itself is a throwback to old-time America.”
Having a council that works together has been a benefit to the town and its citizens, said Maly.
“It’s evident. You see it at the meetings. There might be minor disagreements on the council, but we work together to solve the problems. There’s no personal agenda, there’s no real political party problems within the council. No one has prepared a legacy for him- or her-self,
“It’s just a good mix of people. Mayor [Walter] Curran I really like, even though he is a Patriots fan,” Maly said with a laugh. “He represents the Town well, as do the other council members.”
Maly said council has been active in responding to the concerns of citizens.
“Problems come up, and they’re addressed,” he said. “We had a problem where the Millville [Volunteer Fire Company’s off-site] siren disturbed a lot of citizens in the town who lived near it. That’s been taken care of.
“We had the problem where the emergency medical calls increased in volume to a point where Millville had to add another crew at night — paid paramedics. We addressed that with the surcharge.”
Maly said that, while some people may have had concerns about entering into an agreement with the fire company to charge a fee for service, “You’ve got to look at the big picture.”
“Our town has an older population and will probably have a lot more medical emergencies. You have to have that service available. I want to have that available to me. I’m not a youngster anymore. And if somebody comes down to see me and there’s a medical emergency, I want to make sure there is someone available to respond in a timely manner to that emergency.”
Maly said he’s proud that council did not have to raise taxes last year.
“We just finished reviewing a new employee manual and brought a lot of the employee benefits, like vacation and sick time, up to the level of comparable towns in the area,” he added. “We just reviewed and adopted the salary survey study. To me, the employees are part of the town. They’re probably the Town’s biggest asset. You have visitors to the town, you have residents of the town, and you have the employees of the Town.”
Currently and in the future, he said, the biggest problems facing the Town are drainage and streets, which he said ties directly into having good, reliable employees.
“You can’t fix the streets if you don’t have employees. You can’t check things if you don’t have employees. Employees are the Town. They represent the Town. It’s fair to them, and they deserve it. Hopefully, we’ll be able to implement it with them, in terms of raises.”
Maly praised the Town’s staff for helping make Ocean View a beautiful, safe town in which people want to live.
“The police department is one of our biggest assets. You have people moving here, coming from a law enforcement background, because it’s a nice area to live. We’re the safest town in Delaware. The credit goes to Chief McLaughlin and his personnel.
“I come from a training background,” he noted. “His department is trained at a level that, to me, is astonishing for a department as small as it is. But, then again, you can’t get too much training, because you never know when an emergency situation is going to happen.
“The Town of Ocean View has an excellent town manager who does a superior job in managing the Town affairs, along with the public works department, headed by Charles McMullen.”
The Town has also been proactive with corralling funds in its Emergency Trust Fund, Capital Replacement Fund and Street Repair/Replacement Fund to help pay for future growth responsibly, he noted.
As part of addressing planning and roadwork, the Town recently approved a right-of-way Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) transition plan.
“There’s a lot coming in the future with the ADA compliance issues — hundreds of thousands of dollars to add ramps to sidewalks in various communities within the town; also, the sidewalks themselves and the repaving of the roadways. Fortunately, we planned far enough ahead, it’s a long-term project — 20 years down the road — but at least it’s planned in different phases so we could comply with federal law.”
Maly said he has loved living in Ocean View for the past 14 years, noting it’s a special place.
“It’s a combination of things. It’s a safe place. The people are so kind. Everybody looks out for one and other. It reminds me of when I was growing up in Baltimore,” he said, noting people look out for and take care of one another.
“That’s not seen in other areas. People care for one another down here. It’s not about ‘me’ down here, it’s about ‘us.’ We’re all in this together, and that’s what makes it nice.”
If elected, Maly said, he hopes to help continue to guide the Town in its course of good government to serve the citizens of Ocean View.
“My main concern is not political ambitions. My main concern is to make Ocean View and to keep Ocean View a really great place to live,” said Maly. “That’s the unifying element of the mayor and the council.”
As of early this week, Maly was the only candidate to file to run for the District 3 seat. The deadline to file is Wednesday, March 8, at 4:30 p.m.