By Josh Davis, Associate Editor
(June 21, 2018) Greg Turner, 59, is one of several new faces running for the Ocean Pines Association Board of Directors this year.
Originally from Greenbelt, in Prince George’s County, Turner has lived full time in Ocean Pines since 1978.
“What brought me to the area was being three miles from the beltway and hearing [cars whooshing] 24/7, and then coming down here and staying at my parent’s place and listening to [ocean sounds]. What would you rather listen to?” Turner asked, adding that in Ocean Pines one can hear “The water on the bulkheads and seagulls overhead, and then go over to the beach and sit and watch the waves, sitting on the end of the continent.”
Turner served with the Ocean Pines Fire Department for two decades, including three years as fire chief, and currently runs Turner Electrical & Construction.
He decided to run this year, he said, simply because he was fed up with the system.
“We’ve had bad managers, we’ve had bad management and all kinds of stuff, but it didn’t really seem to affect me,” he said. “Now that I’m trying to maintain things, money is not as free as it used to be – it’s kind of tight.
“People say, ‘We’ve got a million-dollar deficit,’ and instead of how did it happen, the answer was, ‘Oh, we’ll just raise your rates.’ It was just kind of the last straw that broke the camel’s back, and said I can’t do any worse than these people have done,” Turner added.
Turner also said “people that work here” should be held accountable, and that many things have been “done two or three times.”
“The yacht club has been rebuilt twice – once with mold – who paid for that?” he asked. “I’m looking at my bulkheads that have been done twice. Then, they spent almost 10 years trying to build a community center that they had no blueprints for – just some sketches. It’s just the little things that compounded and it gets to you after a while. It got to me.”
Of the current board, Turner said the directors’ answer to every problem was “just to raise my rates.”
“There’s no accountability,” he said. “And it seems as if no one talks to the citizens of the Pines and asks them, ‘What do you think? What do you want done?’ I doesn’t seem to happen that way – and it accounts for a lot of unaccountability.”
That’s not to say everything in Ocean Pines is dismal.
“The community looks good – the golf course looks great,” Turner said. “So there’s a lot of good things that have happened. It’s not just all bad stuff. I don’t want to be the voice of negativity … it just seems to me that people always see the good stuff because they’re not here that much, or that they just don’t seem to worry about it.
“That’s not a good way to be. It’s not a good way to have a structured management system. People are supposed to have a little bit of a say in what goes on, and it doesn’t always seem like that’s what happens,” Turner added.