Editor: As a new resident of Lovettsville, I’m not sure my opinion will carry much weight, but I’d still like to offer some prospective. From what I’ve seen so far, this proposed form of government will be a breeding ground for even further discouragement of dissent.
America used to favor the weak mayor system until reform began in the mid-19th century. This was predominantly due to larger political forces appointing their own people, thus using smaller municipalities to serve a larger agenda. (Look up Tammany Hall).
Having strictly a ceremonial mayor to cut ribbons is charming but wouldn’t the voters of this town prefer that their elected governing official be of use? Allowing the mayor veto power is a step in the right direction but there are still many loopholes in this proposed structure. Taking away the executive branch is leading Lovettsville down a dangerous path to a bureaucracy without checks and balances.
In a town where the vice mayor’s vanity plate says “intimidator,” one can’t help but worry about future bullying and intimidation that would now have the potential to occur within the council itself.
It would be myopic to ponder whether the present council would use this new power morally though, so instead of naming names or pointing fingers, I ask everyone to think about future councils as well, and how this form of government has the potential for the best interest of the town to become secondary to a larger political agenda.
On a smaller scale, do residents in the town want the opportunity to vote their leaders into office or do they want to just trust that the council members won’t just use the buddy system in appointing government officials?
Meghann Barner, Lovettsville