And the Applicants Are

The deadline came and went and the 12 applicants are:

On the ballot - John DeHart, Gene Pease, Matt Pohlman, Will Raymond and Penny Rich

Former Council Members - Joe Capowski, Lee Pavao

Former Candidate - Jason Baker

Newcomers - Donna Bell, H. Brock Page, Joshua Ravitch, Aaron Shah

Did not apply - The three incumbents running for reelection



Personally, I would prefer the new Council make it. Can the Mayor make the appointment without Council's Agreement?I, honestly, don't know. So please enlighten me. 

process for Strom's replacement. I would like to see the 1st runner up be appointed, regardless of vote count. At best, it will have to be the first runner up from among those that applied to fill the vacancy. That's not going to happen. I accept that.  At the very least then, the newly elected council should fill the spot. I will only consider voting for incumbents who support that position since they are the ones with the power here and this is a classic power issue.It's been said before here that perhaps focusing on this one thing is small minded (I'm probably stating that position poorly and I don't mean to), that there are a lot more important things to decide. To me, this is fundamental. A lot of my beef with the status quo is HOW things are done and decided. Lately the walk doesn't match the talk. I can usually live with whatever the council decides. Here are a very few examples.Example #1: The council says it wants voter owned elections, and then a council member who traditionally played a leadership role on the council and who I fully expected to run for mayor resigned in a manner that on the surface appears to say, "I championed voter owned elections unless there is a small possibility that someone who doesn't share my particular politics could win." To me it says, "I want control more than I want process." This goes to the heart of my beef with business as usual.  Example #2: solid waste and the last minute mayor/council shuffling of the chess pieces after deliberation (I don't want to argue about solid waste here, just point out the process).Example #3:  Neighborhood preservation districts. It took years and years for the council to set up this protection for the Northside (and bravo for doing this). Then when council members' neighborhoods are affected in a way they dislike (I'm thinking of Greenwood as one example), they get the rest of the council to move at the speed of light. The message: When it comes to me personally, NIMBY.It shouldn't be who you know that rules the day in CH. In the upcoming election, I just have 4 little votes. Laurin, bravo for making your position clear. Speaking only for myself, it makes a huge difference.     

Of course we're all entitled to our own interpretations, but I actually don't agree with any of your three examples, Barbara.#1 While I am definitely mad at Bill for the way he left, I don't see any reason to blame other Council members for his actions. #2 This didn't seem very publicly helpful. But it seems more hamfisted, maybe incompetent, but certainly not malicious.#3 The Town has been working long and hard on neighborhood preservation. before the invention of Neighborhood Conservation Districts, Northside was designated as an historic conservation area (or some such term). The NCD process is quite deliberate (look at what happened in Coker Hills for example) they move at the typical slow pace of Town government, and of course it's open to any neighborhood to apply.I agree with you that it would be wise to allow the new Council to select the replacement, and if it works out to be the 5th place finisher, that's fine. But I am definitely not for agreeing to do that sight unseen (ie: not knowing what the dynamics of the votes turn out to be).

1) I didn't mean to sound like I blame other council members for the way Bill left, but I do hold them accountable for how we proceed forward. 2) I agree that adding the Millhouse site at the last minute was not malicious, in fact I'm sure it was meant to be helpful. This is the problem with the Internet - nuances are impossible. However, it sort of makes it seem like the public deliberative process was just so much lip service. Maybe I would have done the same thing. But in the context of these other things, to me it doesn't bode well for process. I actually think we sound be dealing with our own waste, but that's another matter.3) I agree that the town worked long and hard on NCDs and I applaud them for it. I am not looking to throw the baby out with the bath water. I also remember the last African American woman who was on the council, although I forget her name (sorry). She was amazing. At one of her final meetings even she noted how long it took for Northside to receive some formal protections versus how quickly the council seemed to move on this for other neighborhoods. Now perhaps my memory if faulty on this and someone will correct me.At any rate, I will gladly settle for the newly elected council selecting a replacement for the vacant seat, even though there is a huge possibility it will be someone I, myself, would not have voted for. So perhaps we can agree on that. 

Jose´meant "The Bill Thorpe Undergraduate Internship Program" which is what it is now called..........Penny, moving on is great. Trashing Bill Strom right before you suggest it is pretty low... 

Appointing the 5th place finisher to a town council vacancy sounds great in theory, but it worked poorly the last time it was done in Chapel Hill.  Here is the story, and Mark and Julie can correct or add any details.  In 1993 Rosemary Waldorf was elected to the town council.  In 1995 she successfully ran for mayor, and after the election, she resigned from her town council seat, leaving a two-year vacancy for the council to fill.  In the 1995 council election, Richard Franck finished in 5th place, only 38 votes behind fourth-place finisher Pat Evans.  Adhering to the principle that the council should appoint the fifth-place finisher, especially a close fifth-place one, the council appointed Richard to fill Rosemary's council seat.  It worked poorly.  Richard was not a good council member, and the voters agreed, for in 1997 when he ran to keep his seat, he again finished in 5th place, but this time 435 votes behind fourth-place finisher Lee Pavao. 

either. I can think of several who won elections but didn't work out so well.

Possibly because the fifth-highest vote getter would not necessarily come in fifth place if the voters' preferences among all the candidates could be taken into account.

Actually, I thought he was a pretty good Council Member, in terms of being knowledgeable and creating policies. He was just an exceptionally campaigner and a mediocre politician in general.



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