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Putting the Mayor on Probation

There will only be half of a year left when Greenwood’s next Mayor takes office. There are two candidates for that extremely short period of time. A lot of people are saying that holding an election for a spot that is only open for a little while is a waste of money and time. I disagree. In fact, I think we should do this every four years. Here is why…

How many times during the past 20 or 30 years have the citizens of Greenwood asked, “Why did I vote for him (or her)?” Each of the past four Mayors have started their four-year term off on rocky ground and alienated many of those they are expected to work with. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could elect a Mayor on a trial basis? Wouldn’t it be amazing if we could give them six months to prove that they are going to at least start to keep their promises and give us a chance to see if the constant promise of a better administration is more than just a political pipe dream?

When you apply for a job in today’s civilian world, whether it is salaried or hourly, you are usually on probation. If you can’t handle the job for any reason, whether it is poor performance, attendance issues or an inability to get along with others, you get fired. We can’t do that with a Mayor unless he does something illegal. With a Mayor, we are stuck with whoever gets the majority of the vote for four long years. In Greenwood, we as a town have repeatedly wished we could change our vote.

Now, we have that option. If the new Mayor takes office and just sits around while collecting a paycheck or spends all of his time campaigning for the next election, I hope the people will notice and correct their mistake. On the other hand, if our new Mayor takes office, puts together a plan and starts making progress with that plan in coordination with the City Council, I hope people will notice that and consider the possibilities for Greenwood with a Mayor and a City Council actually working together.

The rumors of having four, five or more people running for Mayor were just rumors. Only two of those rumored individuals decided to run. Some may have backed off on the thought of having to deal with a run-off. Some may have felt that having an elected Mayor for just six months was a waste of time and money. Some may have been afraid of not making the cut after their “probationary” period.

Whatever the case, we have two candidates for Greenwood’s next Mayor. Both appear to be qualified to do the job. Both have a history and ties to Greenwood. Both apparently care enough about Greenwood to want to stand up and apply for a job that has a history of tarnishing reputations. Both want to see Greenwood live up to its potential and believe that they help make that happen.

In May, we will see which of these candidates can best convince the voters of their ideals, their integrity and their conviction. And I hope all of Greenwood will pay attention to what the new Mayor does and how he does it. Hopefully, he does an amazing job and the people notice.

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