The new Salisbury ‘Dream Team’ – Day and Ireton

It probably wasn’t a big surprise based on the primary results and the perception that this election was a tag team match between Jake Day and Jim Ireton vs. Debbie Campbell and Joe Albero. But the preliminary results are in, and it’s all but official that the Day/Ireton side won handily: Day picked up just under 72% of the vote in routing two-term incumbent Debbie Campbell while Jim Ireton managed just 68% of the vote in defeating Joe Albero and winning a second term.

Campbell was the only one of the three incumbents to lose, as District 1 Council member Shanie Shields won a third term with just 48% of the vote – a quirk in the City Charter allowed both challengers to advance through the primary. Cynthia Polk received 3 more votes than April Jackson did this time.

So where will Salisbury go now? Later this month it appears we will find that the 3-2 majorities which always seemed to stymie Ireton’s key initiatives will now become 3-2 votes in favor, with Day joining incumbents Shields and Laura Mitchell to provide a pro-Ireton majority. And I’d love to get a hold of Debbie Campbell’s green-highlighted copy of the Day plan just to see how many of these items indeed cost city taxpayers.

But another question may be the fate of River’s Edge, which was touted by Campbell as one of her achievements. While the money from the state is probably still going to be there, will the plans have to change to accommodate the retail aspect Day wants to bring to the city? (It’s still pretty sad that taxpayers all around the state are going to be paying a subsidy for a artisan community, but that’s a subject for another time.)

Still, given the primary results none of these results were completely unexpected. Both Day and Shields actually improved their percentages from the primary – which was not surprising to me because people like to back a winner. Day gained 723 votes from the primary while Campbell picked up only 292. Over 71 percent of the new votes went to Day, reflective of the final margin and perhaps a result of the (somewhat undeserved) negative reputation Campbell acquired over the years.

Of course, it’s too early to tell what the future will hold for the losers. While April Jackson was a first-time candidate in District 1, Cynthia Polk has now lost twice. And while Debbie Campbell can look back at eight years where she went from the reformer darling against the “Dream Team” in 2005 to being portrayed as the Wicked Witch of the West on one local blog, Joe Albero literally relocated himself to an apartment inside one of the properties he owns a year ago to establish city residency after living outside Delmar, Delaware for several years. Is he through with Salisbury?

Read more here.

Weighing in on the Salisbury races

On Tuesday, Salisbury voters will head to the polls to elect their mayor and two of five City Council members in the last partial election before changes in 2015 would require all Council members and the mayor be elected simultaneously. So in essence we are picking some of these Council members and mayor for a half-term to be completed in the fall of 2015.

Honestly, it probably doesn’t matter who gets elected in District 1 because they will be advocates for the city’s minority population getting theirs rather than necessarily the benefits of the city as a whole. I heard a lot of complaining from the three women who are running about what the city didn’t do for their district, and while we all want the benefit of good jobs their district in particular is the product of people who made a lot of bad life choices. We also all want a thriving minority community, but it should be in the context of a thriving community as a whole. Moreover, in 2015 that district will double in size and become home to two Council members if the plans remain the same.

But while I can dismiss the District 1 race quickly, I have a lot to say about the mayor’s race.

In 2009, Jim Ireton told us that help was on the way. Well, the city isn’t exactly thriving, and it’s spent a lot of money just to maintain its place on the treadmill. Furthermore, it appears that even more money will have to be spent thanks to government mandates to clean up Chesapeake Bay – despite the fact millions have already been spent on what was supposed to be a state-of-the-art wastewater treatment plant. Meanwhile, Jim touts a lot of “accomplishments” which any halfway decent mayor should have been able to do in his sleep. This is what Jim lists on his website as “Improving Salisbury”:

Third Friday, The city’s first Latino Festival, lowering business capacity fees, people returning to downtown, the city dog park, improvements at Bateman/Onley Road. These are just a few of the important improvements to Salisbury that have happened while Jim has been Mayor. Coalitions across Salisbury have worked with Jim and city staff to move projects forward. Jim led the way on the city’s comprehensive plan, fought for and won a 60% reduction in business capacity fees, and hasn’t raised property taxes his entire time in office.

Jim has aggressively used the city’s revolving loan fund program to help businesses like Mojo’s, and he’s ordered the demolition of five slum properties and worked to close and demolish the Thrift Travel Inn.

Well, no wonder MoJo’s donated to his campaign! I’m just surprised they didn’t max out. But when you think about it – is that a worthy resume of four years in office? Oh, and he claims violent crime dropped 41 percent and he hired the first female chief of police.

Read more here.

Salisbury Maryland Candidate Forum

The Conspiracy To Get Joe Albero

Posted at RightCoastCoservative.

I hardly know where to start with all of this. It’s almost, almost so ridiculous, that it’s hysterical. Except that it’s not really. It’s more pathetic and sad than anything, but mostly it’s very illustrative of the rot gut in our community.

The local news has been high lighting a circus of a story about a prank phone call, and at the center of it all is local blogger extraordinaire; and supposed Salisbury mayoral candidate; Joe Albero. The story starts back a few weeks ago when Albero claimed on his blog that Salisbury mayor,Jim Ireton, phoned him late on a Saturday night, intoxicated, and that Jim conceded the election, well in advance of next April’s vote. Albero claimed Ireton asked to meet him the next day.

Only, none of that was true. Albero had a prank phone call, from a guy pretending to be the mayor. That was it and it should of been not only obvious, but the end of the story….but it wasn’t, it was only the beginning. I’d say it was gullible, if I am to be charitable, for Albero to believe that 1. The mayor would call him. 2. The mayor would call him at 11 o’clock on a Saturday night 3. The mayor would call him drunk. and 4. The mayor would call him to concede the election 10 months away. But he stands by his version of the story, and is now threatening to sue…..somebody. Allegedly the mayor.

Next, Albero calls city council woman Debbie Campbell, who in turn calls the Police Chief because she was allegedly concerned about Jim’s “well being” because he didn’t show up at the fake meeting discussed on the fake phone call the night before. Then somehow, Albero ends up going to the police and filing a complaint or something. That’s when, apparently the police chief, the states attorney, the sheriff, the FBI, WBOC-TV, The Daily Times, WMDT-TV, and reporter, Sarah Lake all conspired to go after Albero, at least according to him.

The police department conducted an investigation into the call at the request of Albero and in doing so they obtained the phone records from Ireton and Albero. As it turned out, indeed there was no phone call from Ireton to Albero. The guy who made the prank call was named and not charged, a newspaper reporter was fired for with holding knowledge of the callers identity and the Police Chief closed the case, as Ireton held a press conference to clear up the whole mess, yesterday.

Read more here.

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