Aug. 7 OPA election deadline nearing 

Voters can find candidate information online through forums, summer newsletter 

(July 29, 2019) Ocean Pines voters, as of today, have 10 days remaining until the ballot deadline for the 2019 Board of Directors election. 

Ballots were mailed to all eligible voters in early July and must be returned either to the ballot box inside the police department office in the Ocean Pines Administration Building on 239 Ocean Parkway or mailed to the Ocean Pines post office box in Berlin. The ballot deadline is close of business, 5 p.m., on Wednesday, Aug. 7.  

Ballots will be tallied, and vote totals announced, on Aug. 9 at 10 a.m. in the East Room of the Ocean Pines Community Center on 235 Ocean Parkway. The election results will be validated on Aug. 10 during the Annual Meeting of Membership in the Assateague Room of the Ocean Pines Community Center on 235 Ocean Parkway. The meeting is scheduled to start at 10 a.m. 

Voters this year may select up to three candidates from the pool of seven, which include, in ballot order, Tom Janasek, Larry Perrone, Camilla Rogers, Paula Gray, Shawn Kotwica, Ed Solum and Gregory Turner. The top three voter-getters will each be elected to three-year terms on the Ocean Pines Board. 

For questions about voter eligibility, contact Membership and Assessment Supervisor Ruth Ann Meyer at 410-641-7717 ext. 3031, or email rmeyer@oceanpines.org. 

For questions about the election itself, email the Elections Committee at elections@oceanpines.org. 

“The Elections Committee has gotten several requests for more information on candidate positions,” Committee Chairman Steve Habeger said. “A good way to become familiar with the candidates and their positions on issues would be to watch the candidate forums.” 

 The committee hosted two official candidate forums in June. To view the first, visit www.youtube.com/watch?v=nFvfp9daOlI&t=6s. To view the second, visit www.youtube.com/watch?v=6rTSulyOPAw&t=3687s. 

Candidate information, including answers to an Elections Committee questionnaire, was mailed to all eligible voters and can be seen in the latest quarterly newsletter, which is available online here: www.oceanpines.org/latest-quarterly-newsletter. Election coverage begins on page 16.  

However, two of the seven candidates, Kotwica and Solum, did not provide statements in time for the Elections Committee deadline. Their spaces were left blank. Kotwica also did not provide a photo.  

Last year, 7,614 ballots were mailed and 3,119 were counted, a return rate of about 41 percent. Eighty total ballots were rejected, with the vast majority, 66, disqualified because they were received after the voting deadline. 

Also last year, the difference between the third-place finisher, who was elected, and the fourth-place finisher, who was not, was just 23 votes. 

“Your vote counts,” Habeger said. “We ask that all Ocean Pines voters pay close attention to ballot instructions and deadlines. Vote for no more than three candidates and make sure your ballot gets back in time to be counted. For those who are mailing a ballot, please note they must be received by Ocean Pines – not postmarked – by Aug. 7.” 

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