Ocean Pines, whether it’s a matter of finance, lifestyle or desirability, is not going to hell in a handbasket. It might seem that way to a few people, but taking the opinions expressed at last Saturday’s Ocean Pines Association budget meeting as a reflection of the entire community’s thinking would be a big mistake.
With somewhere between 4,000 and 5,000 owner-occupied homes in in the community, Ocean Pines has the numbers to raise a truly big ruckus were things as bad as some people say. As it is, however, no more than 1 percent of the population turned out for last Saturday’s meeting, and only a fraction of that had anything to say.
Considering that, the safer post-session assumption to make would be that most people believe the board of directors will work things out in a reasonable fashion, while another segment of the voting-eligible public doesn’t care much at all.
Every community has its constant critics and inveterate worriers, but that doesn’t mean they are carrying the flag for thousands of similarly minded people. More often than not, they just want to express their disagreement with how things are or aren’t being done.
As for the notion that Ocean Pines’ reputation for playing full-contact politics is hampering real estate sales, that isn’t the case. Rough political circumstances have been part of the community for decades, and yet it has become the largest population center in the county.
That’s because homebuyers are more interested in Ocean Pines’ reputation for quiet residential livability and great values on good properties than they are who’s in charge of community affairs.
This doesn’t mean circumstances couldn’t be better administratively, budgetarily or politically, but the fact is Ocean Pines’ is already much better off on all counts than it was a year-and-a-half ago.
So, let’s take a breath. The assessment increase business will work itself out in the next couple of weeks, and life will go on, relatively peacefully, until the next time. That’s just the way it is.