You see, hear and read about it frequently as the first Tuesday in November rolls around, and we suppose that the frequency of the message may just lose its effectiveness.
That won’t stop us from delivering that message anyway.
It’s typical when any election rolls around that the importance of voting is stressed. You may even hear such rhetoric that the upcoming election is the most important of recent memory.
We don’t buy into that type of hype. After all, we believe every election is important and that no election is any less or more important than another.
That is the case with Tuesday’s election for mayor and the Board of Commissioners in Havelock. It’s important. It always is.
Voters will elect the city’s mayor for the next four years. Now the mayor does not get a vote on the five-member Board of Commissioners but he carries weight. The mayor looks to guide the board members and the city in a direction he or she sees, and no doubt the mayor is the face of any city.
Incumbent mayor Jimmy Sanders is facing off against Will Lewis, a two-term city commissioner who has decided he would like to guide Havelock from the mayoral seat.
We’re not here to pick or choose — or even predict — who will come out on top. We’ve written a few stories on both candidates, and it’s simply up to you to decide who you favor.
The same is true for the five commissioner candidates. Voters select two from the pool of incumbent Jim Stuart, George Corbin, Matthew “Sugarbear” Jones, Peter Van Vliet and Brenda Wilson.
With Lewis deciding to run for mayor, this election will result in at least one new member on the Havelock Board of Commissioners.
We commend all the candidates for making the decision to run. They are willing to go through the scrutiny of an election to serve the residents of the city. Whether you like or dislike a candidate or the positions they hold, respect them for agreeing to put their opinions and views in front of the public. It’s not always easy.
And we will admit it’s not an easy time to hold public office in Havelock. The city went through one of its most complicated and intense budgets in the spring and early summer. It initially included a property tax increase, and some tough decisions had to be made to balance the budget without a tax increase, including city employee job cuts. We’re not sure that we see any hope that next year’s budget will be easier.
Havelock has empty houses and businesses as the weak economy continues to have dire effects, and threats to Cherry Point workers and military personnel through federal defense cuts, sequestration and furloughs have once secure workers feeling uncertain about their job futures.
So you can see the importance of Tuesday’s election. Those elected will have to sort through these and other issues for the next four years.
Of course, the most important equation in any election is you, the voter. This election will determine how much you pay in property taxes and what services the city provides. That’s not rhetoric. That’s the truth.
Residents will sometimes complain that officials ignore their wishes. Well, this is your opportunity. Your voice is never as loud as when you cast a vote. Let that voice be heard by voting in Tuesday’s election.