Town Council Members Should Be Nonpartisan
I am responding to comments made by Southern Pines Council members regarding a letter from five former mayors suggesting the council appoint James Holshouser chairman of the long-range planning committee.
I was asked by a citizen what I would think about Holshouser serving as chairman. I said he would be great. He has the experience and demeanor to work with a broad-based group of residents, and he could get a consensus as well as, or better than, most.
I was delighted and grateful he might agree to serve on this committee for the betterment of our town. To infer that the suggestion was political is ludicrous!
I served on the council and as mayor with Chris Smithson's father, Mike. He was a Republican, and I a Democrat -- and nothing that took place at the council was ever along political party lines. In fact, this council should know that local elections are nonpartisan.
How sad to suggest that because past citizens who cared enough to serve on boards and committees to help our town should be excluded and seen as "manipulative."
I have lived in Southern Pines 40 years and served with many fine people on the council and am proud of all that past councils have accomplished. Previous members were often consulted regarding why certain things were done, what was the history, etc. Never did anyone I served with chastise previous members.
Now, the public attending meetings comes away with the feeling of being treated rudely, not receiving answers to their questions, and feeling that council does not have consensus prior to voting. There seems to be a "power play" among the group.
I appreciate all who have served on committees to help make Southern Pines the best place to live!
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