By Greg Ellison
(April 15, 2021) The candidate pool for the 2021 Ocean Pines Association Board of Directors election is slowly morphing into shape, with current Director Frank Daly seeking a second term.
Daly, who is winding down an initial stint on the board after being elected in 2018, is seeking another three-year term to continue on what he says is his commitment to assure long-term financial stability for the association.
“We have to make sure that we can sustain what we have done in the short term over the long run,” he said.
Daly, who was born in Pennsylvania and reared in Cleveland, made an initial unsuccessful board bid in 2016, finishing fourth out of 11 candidates vying for three open seats.
In the 2016 contest, Daly garnered 1,028 votes to chart behind Directors Brett Hill with 1,900 votes, Slobodan Trendic with 1,520 votes and Pat Supik with 1,428 votes.
Additional candidates in the 2016 election were George Simon, Tom Janasek, Doug Parks, Steve Lind, Ray Unger, Jack Collins and Larry Perrone.
Following the 2016 setback, Daly served as chairperson for the Ocean Pines Comprehensive Planning Committee before staging a successful board run in 2018.
After nearly doubling previous vote totals, two years ago Daly finished with 2,048 ballot selections to place second behind Steve Tuttle with 2,322 to fill a pair of board openings.
After consulting with his wife earlier this month, Daly unveiled plans to pursue re-election for another term.
“Over the last three years, a lot has been accomplished,” he said. “We don’t have any dilapidated facilities anymore [and] we have a stable assessment.”
Despite improved management of association amenities in recent years, Daly said work remains to establish succession-planning parameters to ensure continuity of operations as board members or the general manager position changes.
Daly said his primary motivation for seeking another board term is an aversion to stepping away from long-term planning efforts.
“Just to make sure that the community is on solid footing, that the progress we made is not a one-and-done situation,” he said. “A lot of the easy problems have been taken care of, but now we have big problems, like drainage.”
Daly estimated roughly 2,800 of the more than 8,000 residences in Ocean Pines deal with recurring instances of standing water from storms.
“We have to figure out what we’re going to do with drainage,” he said.
Daly said preliminary figures provided by Ocean Pines Public Works indicate that addressing drainage infrastructure through a regular maintenance schedule, similar to bulkhead repairs, would be prohibitively expensive.
“You would nearly double the assessment,” he said.
To make matters worse, Daly said trying to resolve the problems of standing water outside of routine maintenance would significantly increase members’ annual dues.
“That doesn’t get you any major improvements like running pipes down Beauchamp Road,” he said.
Such larger scale infrastructure needs tied to drainage would top the $10 million mark, Daly said.
Daly, who has advanced degrees in engineering and finance, highlighted other issues that could negatively affect property values in the future.
“Short-term rentals … as we got into it became complicated,” he said.
Daly now joins Stuart Lakernick as the only two board candidates to toss their hats in the ring for the upcoming election, as the May 10 filing deadline approaches.
With two board terms expiring this year, Daly’s and Director Frank Brown’s, the required number of candidates in this election would be four, according to the OPA’s election resolutions. The resolutions stipulate there must be two more candidates than open seats.
Search Committee Chairman Tom Piatti said candidates, who must be Pines property owners as of Jan. 1, are still being solicited.
“You have to be in good standing [with] no unpaid charges,” he said.
Piatti said the candidate eligibility requirements also apply to association members’ ability to cast votes in the board election.
Because of the coronavirus pandemic last spring, the association opted to extend the assessment payment due date by three months, which disqualified members not paid in full from voting.
“What happened is a lot of those people were not eligible to vote in the election,” he said. “Ocean Pines sent ballots to those who were eligible to vote and they sent letters to those who were ineligible … so they’d know why.”
Piatti said board candidates should apply no later than 4 p.m. on May 10 to compete in this years contest.
Applications are available at the administration building or on the Ocean Pines website at https://www.oceanpines.org/documents/10184/89280/Candidate-Registration-Form-Approved-9-March-2019-FORM-003.pdf.
For additional information contact Piatti at 410-302-0558 or email email@example.com or Search Committee member Andie Davis at 410-200-6008 or firstname.lastname@example.org.