June 2 election of 3 new board members?

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At last night's KCA Board meeting it was announced that possibly 3 seats on the board will open up. The election of these new board members would be held on June 2. There is no newspaper to provide information about the election, advertise for qualified candidates or provide a forum for their positions on issues. Apparently, the election committee needs members. With little more than 60 days before this election, can we really expect the level of community involvement that is needed to fill these seats? Thanks, Michael, for providing this site so there can be some open community dialogue before this election.

-- Sue Vest (oddux@erols.com), March 23, 2000


Hi Sue -

Could you please explain why there are three possible open seats on the board? At the February KCA meeting, I thought it was announced that one seat would be vacant. Thanks for any information you can provide.

-- Robin Caldwell (rcaldwell@paint.org), March 23, 2000.

I don't know why the three developers' seats are all being vacated now. Andrea Escher said she will be putting information about this in an April newsletter, including a call for candidates and a voting packet.

-- Sue Vest (oddux@erols.com), March 25, 2000.

I think it would be helpful if the KCA Board of Trustees would post relevant information about the upcoming election, including the answer to Robin Caldwell's question (posted above on March 23), on our KCA Web site. (This is a really nice site, by the way, simple and elegant.) If this is not possible yet, even a simple bulletin on the KCA site announcing that there will be three seats on the board up for election on June 2 would be nice. In fact, it would be great to be able to access factual, up-to-date information from the KCA Web site about any such important community issues.

For something as momentous as the developer's deciding to vacate all of their current seats on the board at once for an election that is only a little more than 60 days away, it would also be helpful if the board would have a special flyer communicating this information distributed to the community ASAP (yesterday, if possible). The newsletter and voting packet will take time to put together. Meanwhile, it seems that every possible means of communication should be used to let people know that anyone who wants a seat on the board will have three chances to win one, if they run in the next election.

Electronic forums for open discussion connected with the KCA Web site and/or the Town Crier could also provide additional useful means of communication within Kentlands. However, I personally hope that we will always have some site(s) for discussion such as the ones that Michael Birney has set up for us, i.e., with no connection to the board, no connection to any elected official, no connection to anyone hired or appointed by the board or any elected official in any capacity, and no connection to the Town Crier. I do not share the view that the Town Crier can ever be "independent." Regardless of which way it goes it will always be, in some way, the "official" paper of our community.

-- Mary N. Macdonald (mnmacd@his.com), March 26, 2000.

Barbara Moidel says that we can expect a notice about the three developer board seats being turned over to the citizens for the June 2 election with this Friday's flyer distribution.

-- Mary N. Macdonald (mnmacd@his.com), March 28, 2000.

Thank you, Mary, for your thoughtful piece above. I want to add my thanks to Michael Berney for providing this truly independent forum for the thoughts of the community. We need to see what our neighbors are thinking.

I am a little concerned about the timing of the election, although I realize it is probably influenced if not dictated in the founding documents or bylaws. However, should some flexibility exist, it might be useful to the community (which until March 31 had been told to expect to fill but one vacancy) to slightly delay the election to allow a reasonable amount of time to identify qualified candidates.

Personally speaking, I am heartened by Barbara Moidel's addition to the Board. Her approach and presence have added structure, stability, and civility to its proceedings. She has raised expectations for our community's government.

You may recall, though, that Barbara ran unopposed. If this community could inspire only one qualified candidate six months ago, how reasonable is it to expect that three (or more, if you find political competition appealing) will magically pop up to fill the vacant seats?

It is by no means my intent to impugn the motives of anyone in particular who might stand for election. To the contrary; I applaud their courage. But since we expect so much of them, then perhaps we should take the time and trouble to elect the absolute best we have.

-- David Fetzer (dfetzer@his.com), April 04, 2000.

I am actually more than a little concerned about the timing of the election. On short notice, we are being asked to hurry and elect MORE THAN HALF of the people who will make up our board. The suddenness of the developer's relinquishing all three of their seats at once concerns me. Why is there a need for control to be transferred in such a precipitous way? I absolutely agree with David Fetzer and Sue Vest that the timing of the election may not allow for the necessary level of community involvement to be attained, given the unexpected development of three board seats opening up at the same time.

I also agree with David that Barbara Moidel's presence on the board has made a difference for the better, for the reasons he states, and that she has raised expectations for our community's government. I hope that these expectations will be realized on June 2, despite the rush to elect three new board members.

-- Mary N. Macdonald (mnmacd@his.com), April 04, 2000.

Does anyone have any thoughts on the developer's explanation (front page article in this month's Town Crier) for why they are suddenly turning all three of their boards seats over to the residents on such short notice? I cannot make sense of this explanation as justification for going to full citizen control of the board (a) before we have even had experience with majority control, and (b) during the critical phase of the developer's exiting. Certainly, I do not understand how the future timing for electing board members would be an issue. Instead of the road we are taking, couldn't the matter of timing be addressed with a one-time change in the length of the term for one or more of the board seats up for election in November, 2000?

-- Mary N. Macdonald (mnmacd@his.com), April 25, 2000.

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