The Developer Cartel's Goal

The Developer Cartel's Goal
No Longer "The Liberty Building"

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Diana Waterman's Cow, Oprah

            Diana Waterman is looking for a name for her new calf born two days ago to her Black Angus cow which she named “Oprah”.  No, really, she does have a Black Angus cow and she named it “Oprah”. (click here to see her Facebook announcement.)  Now I’m sure she chose that name because she has a close friend named Oprah and that it has nothing to do with the immensely popular and successful black woman, Oprah Winfrey.
            Well, who is this Diana Waterman woman and why does it matter? She is the Financial Records Manager with Coldwell Banker Waterman Realty.  She is the treasurer of the United Way of Queen Anne’s County. Diana is the 1st Vice President of the Maryland Federation of Republican Women and also a member of both the Chesapeake Women’s Network and the QAC Chamber of Commerce.
            Now comes the part that matters.  Diana Waterman serves as the Chair of the Queen Anne's County Republican Central Committee and get this, she is also Vice President of the Maryland Republican Party.  One of her listed duties in these important positions is to “promote a positive political image” for the Republican Party.
            As a Republican, I do not believe that Diana Waterman comes even close to promoting a positive image for the party.  During our recent county election she campaigned with Robert Mansfield, one of two Republican Candidates for County Commissioner from District 1. The huge problem was that Diana was a top officer (Vice Chair) of the Republican Central Committee of Queen Anne’s County at the time.  She knew that by campaigning for Mr. Mansfield (who just happened to have a lengthy criminal past) against another Republican, she was abusing her position on the Central Committee.
            Each Central Committee member is elected by all party members and is supposed to be a representative of the entire party -- not certain elements or constituencies within it.  Under the by-laws of both Republican and Democrat Central Committees, it’s the role of each member, and the Central Committee in general, to remain completely neutral in their support of declared candidates until after the primary.  This is a good rule because it allows all candidates to be a part of a fair and ethical election process, supported by their local central committee.  It was obvious that Ms. Waterman simply did not care about following rules, treating Republican candidates fairly, or exercising good ethics.
            Now there is a slim chance that Diana Waterman names all of her pets after prominent black Americans she admires, but I doubt it.  In fact, I’m betting she names her new calf “Michael Steele”.  Perhaps she will give him a quick call and see if he’s okay with that. (Actually, I’m betting that when she reads this, a few of her recent Facebook posts disappear.)
            Sadly, Ms. Waterman, you are precisely why an enormous number of Americans view Republicans as racists.  You certainly do not represent my values or the values I want the Republican Party to espouse.  Do us a favor and resign immediately!

Sveinn C. Storm

Mr. Arentz Puts the Citizens in Last Place

           During the campaigns of our newly elected county commissioners, we repeatedly heard affirmations of their desire to hear and act upon the concerns of all of the citizens of Queen Anne's County.  However, the first major change to our county commissioner meetings was the removal of the public comment period from the beginning of those meetings.  The responsibility for this decision lies with the commission president, Steve Arentz, who is responsible for setting the meeting agendas
            While Mr. Arentz did not get rid of public participation altogether, he moved it to the very end of the meetings which he knows is the most inconvenient time of the citizens. The citizens know that the early comment period was their most valuable and practical means of exercising their right to participate in their county government.
            Half of the commissioner meetings are morning meetings and half are evening meetings.  Prior to Mr. Arentz’s new dictate, the public comment periods were always near the beginning of these meetings.  Previous commissioners were aware that most citizens need to go to work late in order to speak at a morning meeting.  They knew that by moving public comment to the end of the morning meetings, it would mean people would have to take the whole day off, and that few people could afford to do that.  They also knew that moving public comment to the end of an evening meeting would mean that few citizens would, or could, stay to eleven or twelve at night in order to speak.  Their goal was to encourage and make public participation possible, not prevent it.
            At the very heart of our representative democracy is public participation and as Americans we have both the right and the responsibility to participate in our government.  We vote for the leaders of our government which in turn we expect to act on the will of the people.  However, our participation means far more than just casting a vote. It means becoming and staying informed, attending meetings and voicing our beliefs and desires to our government.
            When citizens are prevented from public participation, government officials make decisions without hearing the people’s will, which greatly reduces their responsibility to be transparent or accountable for their actions.  Limiting citizen comment encourages a genuine abuse of powers and the erosion of our democratic society.
            All too often, Americans have been withdrawing from public participation in their town and county governments.  Many believe their voices will be ignored and that most politicians are self-serving and crooked.  When it comes to public participation, however, our history is rich with examples where it only took a few people, at key points in time, to effect great change.
            Queen Anne’s County Commissioners Dave Dunmyer and Bob Simmons have stated their full support of putting public comment back near the beginning of their meetings. Commissioner Phil Dumenil has stated, “It really doesn’t matter to me if we do it before or later in the meeting.”  Commissioner Dave Olds has not returned emails and phone calls requesting his opinion on the matter.
            By putting the opportunity for Queen Anne’s County citizens to participate in their government last on his agenda, commission president Steve Arentz’s is making a strong statement.  For those who believe in our democratic principles of government and don’t believe that any citizen of our county should be in last place, please email, call or write your commissioners.  Their information is listed below.
            Better yet, attend the next county commissioner meeting, Tuesday, February 22nd.  It will be in the evening, however, the agenda has not yet been posted.  When it is posted, you will be able to click on the following to see if you’re still in last place: http://www.qac.org/default.aspx?pageid=1366&template=3&PageLevel=2&toplevel=36&cid=44

Commissioner Address:  107 N. Liberty StCentreville, MD 21617     
Ph: 410.758.4098   Fax: 410.758.1170
President: Steve J. Arentz  (443) 262-5303  email: sarentz@qac.org
Vice President:  Philip L. Dumenil   (443) 262-5367   email: pdumenil@qac.org
David L. Dunmyer   (443) 262-5315   email: ddunmyer@qac.org
Bob Simmons   (443) 262-5324   email: bsimmons@qac.org
Dave Olds   (443) 262-5411   email: dolds@qac.org