Editor: I am proud to say I am a new Leesburg resident. My husband and I left Great Falls in Fairfax County to downsize to what we believed to be a great place to live—full of a strong sense of welcoming community—not to mention some great restaurants, parks, and shops where you can get to just about anywhere you need to go in 5 minutes. We love the fact we can walk to Shoes for coffee or Lightfoot for dinner or cross the street to Ida Lee Park.
Leesburg is a town of nearly 50,000 people, yet it still maintains the small town charm with its historic downtown. The elected officials I have met love this town and do all they can to preserve its history while helping it grow and prosper. Local government officials work nearly 24-7 to be accessible and responsible to their citizens and they deserve our respect.
Leesburg’s government is headed by an elected mayor. She is the public face of our town. The most important part of the mayor’s job is helping attract new people and new business to the city. Without an ongoing influx of new people and new businesses, the city will suffer the same fate as other small cities in rural areas across the country. It will fail. It is increasingly difficult for our smaller cities to have the resources necessary for success.
Despite the tasks that fall within the office of the mayor, Leesburg does not provide its mayor with either a physical office to conduct business or any staff support. A successful outcome for the town’s government is totally dependent on a mayor who lacks both power and resources.
Leesburg has had more than its share of successful mayors, mostly because of the quality of the people in the town. I encourage the council to give the mayor the resources she needs to continue to be successful for all of us. Let’s give the mayor our respect and resources necessary to conduct daily business.
Susan Platt, Leesburg