Archive for Thursday, January 8, 2009

City, district need full slate of candidates

January 8, 2009

It appears there will be a campaign this spring for De Soto mayor. But with just less that three weeks before the filing deadline, no one has filed for the two De Soto City Council seats or the three De Soto USD 232 Board of Education positions that expire this year. The open board seats include Position 4 seat that will be represented by a De Soto resident or someone from the unincorporated area to the south or west.

If this year follows past trends, filing activity will pick up in next two weeks. The city of De Soto or USD 232 rarely have uncontested elections and primaries for board seats or the city council have not been uncommon.

It is to be hoped, that trend is repeated. The city and the school district both face difficult times in a stalled economy and have myriad issues that need to be vetted before the voters.

Perhaps ironically, elections, which by nature are competitive and divisive events, offer a community the opportunity to reach consensus after differing points of view are argued and debated. There are winners and losers in elections, and candidates who won on an issue-driven campaign have a mandate to pursue policies expounded.

And full candidate slates offer the hope of renewal with a chance for fresh ideas, perspectives and attitudes that ignore entrenched positions or an overlooked solution.

A contested election also offers the opportunity to increase awareness on issues. The city’s current discussion of the future of the water utility is a case in point. At a recent council meeting, council members and those in the audience advocating renovation of the Sunflower water treatment plant lamented the public indifference of the important issue.

There are many in De Soto with a great deal of affection for the community and also many talented and energetic residents. We hope some of those individuals step forward in the coming weeks.

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