By Josh Davis, Associate Editor
(Aug. 2, 2018) For those who have not yet voted, Ocean Pines property owners have until 5 p.m. next Wednesday to cast ballots in the 2018 Board of Directors election.
Ballots were mailed in July and can be returned either by mail or dropped off at the ballot box inside the Ocean Pines Police Station on 239 Ocean Parkway.
“The election process seems to be proceeding smoothly,” Elections Committee Chairman Steve Habeger said. “We have received a few requests for duplicate ballots, but nothing out of the ordinary.”
Election committee records indicate the number of rejected ballots jumped from 45 in 2015 to 129 in 2017. Last year, the majority of uncounted votes, reportedly 72, were because ballots were received late.
“I would ask all voters to read and follow the voting instruction on the back page of the mailer that accompanied the ballot,” Habeger said. “Voting requires two actions to be accomplished: First, mark the ballot so that the machine can read it properly. Second, get the ballot in on time, either by mail or in the drop box.”
Habeger reaffirmed that the 5 p.m. voting deadline next Wednesday is absolute.
Voters this year may choose up to four candidates.
Running are former Elections Committee Chairman Steve Tuttle, Comprehensive Planning Committee Chairman Frank Daly, electrical contractor Greg Turner, retired railroad yardmaster Paula Gray, businesswoman Esther Diller, incumbent Director Ted Moroney and retired civil service worker Arie Klapholz.
The top-two vote getters will each earn three-year terms on the board, while the third and fourth-place finishers will inherit the unexpired portion of terms vacated by former directors Brett Hill and Pat Supik, one year each. Hill resigned from office last year and Supik resigned in June.
Votes will be publicly counted and vote totals announced on Aug. 10. Counting is scheduled to start at 9 a.m. in the Marlin Room of the Ocean Pines Community Center on 235 Ocean Parkway.
Election results will be validated during the annual meeting on Aug. 11 at 10 a.m. in the Assateague Room of the community center. Property owners are encouraged to attend and should be ready to provide a photo ID, such as a driver’s license.
The Ocean Pines Elections Committee will monitor a telephone hotline, 410-208-3989, to answer questions and field requests for replacement ballots.
For more information, contact Habeger at email@example.com.