OCEAN CITY – Mayor Rick Meehan cruised to re-election on Tuesday and is excited by how the voters structured the new City Council.
For the first time as mayor, which he became in 2006, Meehan was opposed, this year by Nick Campagnoli. However, he succeeded to gain his post once again with 2,238 votes compared to Campagnoli’s 629 votes.
“I am very appreciative of the fact that the citizens came out supported me in this election … it was great to see so many people come out and vote in the election and support me for another term,” said Meehan, who served on the council from 1985-2006 before coming mayor and has never lost an Ocean City election.
Meehan called this year’s election one of the most important he can recall for Ocean City as it returned incumbents Doug Cymek and Mary Knight and replaced former Council President Jim Hall, who has served on the council for 25 years, as well as Councilman Joe Hall. Former Councilman Joe Mitrecic and former city manager Dennis Dare will replace Jim Hall and Joe Hall on the council, eliminating the council majority that was in power for the last two years.
“The last two years in my opinion had been very difficult, and it was well documented that I didn’t approve of all of the decisions that were made by the current majority of the council [Joe Hall, Brent Ashley, Jim Hall and Margaret Pillas] and I believe the citizens didn’t agree either and that this election proved that to be true,” the mayor said. “Whereas, many people in 2010 might not have come out to vote because they were happy with the way things were going or they just didn’t anticipate any major changes in how we did business. After what happened in the last couple of years everybody stood up, took notice, came out to vote and made some changes and they are in the best interest of Ocean City and the future of Ocean City, and I am very happy for the four candidates that won council positions.”
Meehan said the four council elects will help move the town forward in a positive direction.
“The city manager [David Recor] is planning and has already begun organizing a strategic planning session on how we do business, how we are operating as a government, and what are priorities are for Ocean City and for the citizens of Ocean City,” he said. “Now we have a council in place that can really take advantage of that opportunity, and really work through this strategic planning process to improve the way we do things, and take a fresh look at how we do things, and to make what we do better for the citizens of Ocean City.”
Meehan believes the public will take immediate notice on how the new council will be more open to discussion.
“Our goal is to make sure everybody is involved and to really make sure that before decisions are made that we do all the proper research, that we have the proper materials in place and knowledge in place to make good decision, and that will be apparent early on with this new council,” he said.
Meehan extended a “thank you” to all of his supporters.
“I want to thank so many people and the numbers of voters that turned out for this election,” he said. “This is important, this is our community, we work for the voters, we work for our citizens, and I am looking forward to as I know the new council is to following up on the confidence in us and working hard in their behalf.”