Readers’ Views

Change not always bad

To the Editor:

What is happening in this community (Fairmont) is utterly ridiculous and could have far-reaching ramifications for our future.

Tom Hawkins clearly obtained a majority of votes to be elected councilman at-large for the city. However, the recall committee (representing a small but vocal minority of voters) is now attempting to negate the result of this election because they do not agree with Mr. Hawkins’ ideas.

If this is how they feel, they should start gathering their friends and prepare for the next election cycle, which is the normal democratic process for achieving a change in elected leadership.

If this recall is allowed, perhaps there should also be one for the mayor for limiting the open discussion at the beginning of council meetings, or for any of the other members of the council who do not vote the way I think they should. This sounds ridiculous because it is.

Mr. Hawkins has been on the hospital board, Lakeview nursing home board, as well as numerous other boards in our community.

He has also served on many business committees and boards through the years as a Chevrolet franchise dealer. He has made numerous investments in the city of Fairmont and is a highly regarded member of the local business community. He deserves more respect than to have his name dragged through the mud by a vicious and divisive minority in this community.

As to the remark, “This is not Tom Hawkins council,” I would agree. However, I believe the vote was 3-2 not 1-4 as one letter writer would have us believe. This is not the first time the question has been raised in the last few years without the council being given adequate information or options to make a decision. Mr. Anderson raised the question several years ago but was shut down (probably by a 1-4 vote because of the dynamics of the council at the time). After several election cycles, the makeup of the council has changed to reflect current views of the majority of voters in the city, and the decision was made to explore other options.

Now is not the time to allow a small minority to control the process of city government. The voters have spoken. Mr. Hawkins and I may be as far apart as Don and Bernie on many issues, but I greatly respect him and his integrity. I know from personal experience when he is on a committee or board he does his homework and reaches out to others for information to educate himself and help him make informed decisions. He doesn’t take the easy road and continue what has always been done in the past if he doesn’t think it’s the best choice. L

Looking back at what has transpired in Fairmont over the last 30 years and considering the complaints one hears on the street, perhaps it is time for us to review where we are and where we want to go as a community. Change is always difficult, but it’s not always bad.

Chuck Omvig



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