Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Village Elections: April 20, 2013 (Tuesday LINKS)

"With Village Elections just around the corner, it will be interesting to see how people vote on this Plan."  It was meant as a threat, but I didn't take it that way.  In fact, it got me excited.  After years of missed quorums and electorates that could barely fill Slayton House, people were excited and engaged about the future of Columbia.

But it was meant as a threat.

And to give credit where credit is due, we are looking at a slate of contested Columbia Council seats in Wilde Lake (Regina Clay), River Hill (Michael Cornell), and Long Reach (Ed Coleman).  There may be more, or less, as candidate petitions are filed and I am still waiting to see who I will face in Dorsey's Search.

Make no mistake that this is a part of an an organized attempt to unseat the current board due to our votes in favor of many different initiatives, the Inner Arbor Plan being most prominent, that move Columbia forward in constructive, measurable ways.  I am empathetic to my colleagues that were not anticipating having to campaign this Spring, but also see this more as an opportunity than a hindrance.  I am proud of what we've done and I am proud to have worked towards those goals with you.

A lot of this has to do with my faith in Columbia.  I will acknowledge up front that "we" don't normally win these elections.  Those who wish to lead Columbia forward to position itself for the future are the away team.  When the banners are flying and the votes are being cast, everyone has something nice to say with a pat on the back, but when it comes time to knock on doors or even show up at the ballot box, we fall short.  That must change.

And I think it already has.  Julia Jackson McCready will be running as challenger for the Columbia Council seat in Oakland Mills.  While others may wish to cast this election as being "against" a single person, I don't see it that way.  Julia brings strength and determination distinct from those protest elections respectfully noted in Wilde Lake, River Hill, and Long Reach.  She is "for" Columbia, and it would be an insult to describe this race in any other terms.  Julia's candidacy, in its very existence, is revolutionary.

I make no exaggeration in saying that April 20, 2013 may be the most important Columbia-wide election in my lifetime.  Four elections can shift a majority and there is every reason to believe there may be more.  You should have no doubt in your mind that the individuals behind this effort would like to overturn the Inner Arbor vote and possibly others.  Hobbit's Glenn is in the balance.  The future of a new Tennis facility is in the balance.  The emphasis on young professionals and young families is in the balance.  If you aren't inspired to get involved this April, then you aren't paying attention.


Ken Ulman promised "significant investment" in stormwater management to control flooding in Old Ellicott City during his budget hearing last night.  That is very good news for one of the most pressing existential problems facing our County seat.

Governing Magazine explains the difference between Governor O'Malley's transportation proposal and that passed in VirginiaIn summary - the Maryland plan relies on expanding the sales tax to gasoline, while Virginia (and prior Maryland transportation funds) relies on an individualized gas tax.

The Baltimore Sun is head over heels about County Executive Laura Neuman.  It is amazing that they have not yet written an editorial praising the manner in which she parks her car in the County Executive parking spot.

Featured Blog Post of the Day: Julia writes a "Thank You Note" to the CA Board of Directors for the passage of the Inner Arbor concept plan.  She also uses a phrase that I had not heard before, but really like - "The Columbia Association--our advocates in fostering a better quality of life..."

That's all for today.  I have a very exciting idea for my 4th Blogaversary that I will need your help on.  In the meantime, please watch this video:

Have a great Tuesday doing what you love!