By Derek Glover
I attended the Searcy city council meeting last Tuesday, which was eventful to say the least. More than anything, I am disappointed in my city officials.
The decision by our council to become a non-partisan body is another in a long line of cowardly moves by many of our officials. Both Mr. Sterling and Mayor Laforce have been quoted as saying they feel it will allow the Aldermen to serve the citizens better. Interesting how they are so concerned over serving the citizens while they have argued in court against the citizens’ right to vote on the A&P tax. The idea that this will somehow unite the council and remove politics is like saying two football teams will not line up against each other if they have the same color uniforms. Make no mistake, there will still be disagreements, maybe even more now that it’s a free for all. The real motivation is accountability.
Many members of the council realize that their party is actively campaigning against them and they do not wish to run a primary. Instead, they hope the change will allow them an advantage in holding their seats.
Years ago, then-Mayor Evans told me that the city government worked for me, and that anyone was welcome to speak to the council because it was the people’s meeting. It has become clear that this is no longer the sentiment at City Hall. Anyone who disagrees will be marginalized and denied an opportunity to speak as they silence dissent.
Derek Glover is a guest contributor to The Arkansas Patriot. He is currently a candidate for Searcy City Council in Ward 3. Contact Derek at firstname.lastname@example.org