We really try to avoid the trap of getting involved in personality skirmishes around here. There is a general feel around the office that we attempt to avoid the infamous “he said-she said” debates between residents, and our reporters try to look past personality clashes between town and county officials and instead look at the core values of each argument — then attempt to spell them out each week so the readers can make their own informed opinions.
But the Ocean View Town Council has gotten out of hand.
No longer are pertinent issues to the town’s residents as important as select council members one-upping each other or verbally attacking one another by use of the pulpits the residents voted to give each member with which to speak. The mess has resulted in one skirmish after a meeting between residents, and a general public distaste for those leading the town. More time is now being spent in meetings on these personality clashes than the business of running the town.
And perhaps the worst part of this entire months-long debacle is that it’s negated the potential of a fantastic council leading the town. Each member of the Ocean View Town Council has individual talents and characteristics that could have potentially made the council as strong as any in recent years. They are each bright, experienced in different ways and eager to do the best they can. In Mayor Gary Meredith, they have a leader who has been through the fires before, and has always seemingly done what he has felt was in the best interest for the residents of the town.
However, they have regressed into an impotent entity that doesn’t do much more than bicker with one another on a consistent basis.
We implore the members of the Ocean View Town Council to shake hands, agree to sometimes disagree and push aside their personal conflicts for the betterment of the town that elected them to serve the public’s interest. It is fine to disagree on issues — in fact, we ask that they sometimes do disagree so every opinion can at least be heard.
But this has gotten far out of hand.
-----We received a few letters this week regarding the election in Fenwick Island. Though they are in response to a letter we ran in last week’s paper, and we understand why they feel they are important, we’ve decided to stick to our policy and not run any letters regarding an election the week before ballots are cast.
We hope the questions-and-answer piece we are running this week provides voters with all the information they need to make informed decisions on Saturday.