We must trust our local election officials

Understanding The November Ballot For Council Voting

In order to make an informed decision concerning voting I think it is important to understand the structure of your local government. Here in Colonial Beach we have a council that is made up of 7 members. One of which serves as the Mayor.

In Colonial Beach the mayor has no more clout when voting on issues than any other member. The only perks to serving as mayor is that he or she presides over meetings, sets emergency meetings and kisses baby’s during parades…that is used to before Covid 19.

All members of council are reimbursed $150.00 a month for expenses. Other than that they are virtually volunteers. In the past many members have chosen not to accept their expense money and offer it to their favorite charity or non profit group here in town.

Terms are served in 4 year increments and elections for council are customarily held every other year. However when there is an unexpected vacancy, such as a death or a member resigning early, elections are held to fill the remainder of terms left by those vacancies.

If there is an unexpected vacancy the council will call for applicants to fill the vacant seat and vote to appoint a member. The appointment will be only until the next election at which time the council will hold an election for that seat alone if no other seats have become vacant.

This November we have 3 vacant seats coming due and the seat of the Mayor is also up for vote. Mayor Eddie Blunt has not expressed an interest in running re-election.

Vice Mayor Robin Schick is not due to end her term until 2022. Schick is on the ballot, running for Mayor, but if she does not win the election she will continue to serve as a council members until her seat is up for re-election in 2022.

Michael Fitzpatrick is running against Robin Schick for Mayor.

If Schick wins the Mayoral election she will leave a vacant council seat which will not be filled by a vote, but rather be filled by an appointment which will be decided by the council after the election. The appointed member will take over Schick’s seat in January and will remain there until the next election in 2021. Who ever is appointed will have the chance to collect signatures and be placed on the following election ballot if they choose. Other candidates will also have a chance to run for the remaining year in 2021.

Currently there are three seats up for re-election, Frank Alger’s, Stephen Cirbee’s and Dallas Leamon’s. Only Dallas Leamon is on the ballot running for re-election to the council. Neither Alger nor Cirbee have announced a desire to run for reelection.

The other candidates on the ballot for council members are; Thomas Moncure Jr., Richard M. “Mike” Cabrey, Wayne DiRosario, Alan Darlington and Caryn Self Sullivan.

Regardless of the outcome of either the council or mayoral elections, Robin Schick, Pat Ey and Vicki Roberson will remain on council at least until 2022.

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