Letter: Experience Counts in City Council Election
Chairman for the Manassas City Republican Committee Steven F. Thomas encourages residents to vote for experience in upcoming election.
On May 1st, Manassas City will hold an election for mayor and three city council members. Voters will choose between three Republican, one Independent, and one Democrat, to fill three city council seats.
In January, 605 Manassas voters attended the Manassas City Republican Convention. This was the largest attendance ever for a convention held in the city, and the attendees were from across the political spectrum. These voters were presented with five qualified candidates, who then selected Jon Way, Mark Wolfe, and Ian Lovejoy as the Republican nominees for City Council. What is important about this process is each of the nominees has been vetted by a diverse group of Manassas voters, and was found to be the best qualified to govern. e
What qualifications do either the independent or Democrat candidates have? Neither has any elected experience. Neither has served on a city board or commission, such as Planning Commission, Architectural Review Board, or any other citizen advisory board. Neither has been active in any civic organization, such as the Rotary, Elks, or Chamber of Commerce. Neither candidate has a record of engagement within the city, or any demonstrable leadership experience. Basically, their resumes are thin to nonexistent, and neither went through a serious vetting process. The Independent candidate didn’t even attend the recent candidate forum, hosted by the Old Town Business Association.
Contrast this with the Republican nominees. Wolfe and Way are currently serving as council members, and previously served on boards and commissions. Lovejoy has served on the Architectural Review Board and Family Services Commission. He also served as President of the Manassas City Schools Education Foundation. Wolfe, Way, and Lovejoy have either elected experience, board or commission experience, or both. All three have extensive resumes, demonstrating engagement within the community, and most importantly, a capacity to govern.
As you make your choices for city council, I hope you will look at the resumes of each candidate. It’s very easy for a candidate to say “elect me, and I’ll do a good job”. We are essentially hiring our local government. As with any job, experience counts.
Steven F. Thomas
Manassas City Republican Committee