Time is closing in on the elections. It is important to vote. Not only is it easy, but it may also be most convenient to go to the town hall and vote by absentee ballot. That time is running short also.
Which candidate one votes for is personal and extremely private we all know that. The motivation of the candidate is an important issue. I am a candidate for City Council in Rockland and I assure you that the driving force is not the pay: $800 per year. That works out to about $66.67 per once a month Monday night meeting. However, if you have two, which takes in the agenda-setting meeting and a regular meeting it extends to $33.33 per meeting.
IF any meeting should last three hours, usually less if the council is tired and had a rough day, the hourly rate could be about $10 per hour. However, if you include preparation time to properly research, analyze, and prepare your homework it might adjust to a whopping $2, $3 an hour. MOST LIKELY LESS IN THE LONG RUN.
Then, on top of this, if you want to be diligent and concerned about other happenings in town you might attend some of the umpteen meetings going on with all the various committees, sub-committees, and meetings at the bakery. You can expect to realize you have just worked at the same rate as perhaps a factory worker in some third world country. So, money is not the attraction.
The opportunity to utilize your experience, education, observations, and the everyday life of a community you care about, invested in, and watched for the last 38 plus or minus years. Not one of our objectives is as important as all of them.
Drugs, Cruise Ships, Streets, HIGHER THAN HIGH TAXES, INVASION OF THE GROUPIES, the showing of what happens when alliances are formed, safety on our streets, infrastructure concerns, HIGHER THAN HIGH TAXES, (yes repeated), people who thirst for power by abusing their positions, making changes too fast, not allowing people to be heard, and the list can go on and on.
I do not like alliances and will not succumb to them. I believe that five people need to be part of the solution and will be. Three people aligning themselves outside city hall is over. No more. Decisions need to be made in front of the taxpayers, not at the local bakery.
If these folks do not know what transparency is, perhaps they will learn.
One out of five can make a difference if the public pays attention and is willing to come forward and support the issues.
All five may agree, four out of five may agree, and three out of five may agree, but with open and constructive reasoning will be expected. No decisions made weeks or months in advance.
I intend to see a spirited discussion for the choosing of a new mayor and not have to contradict a decision made last month in some clandestine fashion outside of city hall. Those days need to come to an end. Exposure of the behavior will be apparent and brought forth.
City Hall business is for the four walls of city hall, not at a kitchen table with limited access. Not at the bakery with options to exclude some people, not in the "same mindset." People know the difference and are tired of it. We need to allow each individual to act as an individual and not as puppets controlled by a puppet "master." Times are changing and changes are necessary, but for a reason, and after careful consideration, and after due diligence of research and combining the efforts of everyone.
Please vote for me: HAROLD DALE HAYWARD, ROCKLAND CITY COUNCIL.