Letter to the Editor: Selectman Encourages Runs for Office
Selectman Glenn Kessler urges people to run for uncontested offices and to join contested races.
It’s election time in Swampscott and residents, you have the opportunity to make your voices heard and run for various offices. We have a vibrant community with viewpoints from across the board, and…we have issues in town that are important to us all. Home rule, school issues, deciding if we need a turf field or not, zoning, what to do about town owned properties, unfunded pension liabilities, flooding and sewage repairs…the list goes on. Here are open positions and where we stand with candidates to date, i.e., those who have pulled papers:
Town moderator: 1 person running unopposed
Board of Selectmen: 2 open seats-4 people running
Board of Assessors: 1 person running unopposed
School Committee: 2 open seats; 3 people running
Library Trustee: 1 person running unopposed
Board of Health: 1 person running unopposed
Planning Board: 1person running unopposed
Housing Authority: 1 person running unopposed
Constables- 3 open seats - 2 people running unopposed
We also need people to run for Town Meeting to represent your respective precincts. Call the Town Clerk, Sue Duplin; she can tell you how to get started.
We have races that beg for resident involvement. Those people who have already decided to run are all good people but like in past years, unopposed elections don’t to us justice. We deserve and should expect contested elections. I read the Patch and have seen the passionate blogging about all of the above issues and more. Well, here is your chance to step up and be counted! Last year I decided to get involved, and I have to tell you all that it has been well worth the effort. I’ll probably get people angry with me during the next 2 years with some of my votes that I’ll take, but the thing is, I, like you, want our town to be the best place it can be to raise a family, and to be proud of where we live. I accept and welcome the challenges that being involved politically takes on a personal level from both a time and family perspective. I took the plunge; you can too.
As of today, the only true races are for the School Committee and Selectmen. New candidates running for the Board of Selectmen is a good thing; we need new people to come forward and get involved. I hope that others will join this race, the school committee race and the others listed above. Reading the blogs on Patch, well-meaning residents often raise legitimate complaints about how the town is being run but there’s more that you can do other than blogging anonymously or with your given names. I encourage you to pull papers and run for office. The deadline is fast approaching (March 8th to pull papers and return them with signatures by March 12th).
I am proud to represent Swampscott, and I salute those who volunteer on boards and committees. I encourage you to step up as many of our friends and neighbors have.