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Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette Logo Berlin, Ocean Pines News Worcester County Bayside Gazette


OP Town Hall meeting may raise referendum

Among the subjects that could come up at this Saturday’s Town Hall meeting in Ocean Pines is the current situation with the petitions that were rejected by the board of directors.

One called for a referendum on whether to build the golf clubhouse, and the other on limiting board spending. While the board’s denial of the latter petition is facing a legal challenge, based on its having enough signatures to exceed the required percentage of voters, the clubhouse referendum demand was rendered moot when construction began on that project got underway.

Unfortunately, we contributed to some confusion in that regard by reporting a few weeks ago that the clubhouse submission also collected enough signatures to qualify.

It did not, having come up a few signers short of the requisite number. That was our mistake and no one else’s, and we want to be sure Ocean Pines residents understand that before officials are placed in position of having to defend something that is not correct through no fault of their own.

Having said that, we do believe that community meetings that bring residents up to date on current activities and official actions serve a valuable purpose that other jurisdictions should emulate.

That is especially so of the question-and-answer session that will be a part of this exercise in Ocean Pines. Such dialogues can go a long way to clearing up misunderstandings, quashing unfounded speculation and the various theories that seem to sprout whenever honest information is in short supply.

For this Town Hall session to be effective, however, participants should conduct themselves in a civil manner and remember that a question-and-answer exchange is exactly that. It should not be viewed as an opportunity to argue, or press home a point that’s contrary to the answer received. Ask a question, get an answer and move on.

Because the sponsors of this event, the Communications Committee, and all others involved want a productive meeting, it was important for us to set the record straight.