(Crystal A. Proxmire, 11/3/2011)
The Ferndale First Government Watchdog Group has invited candidates to attend a town hall style forum, moderated by the group’s organizer Sean House, who is also the President of South Oakland Area Republicans. The meeting will be Saturday, November 5, 2011 at “high noon,” says the email promoting the forum. (That’s 12pm for those of you who prefer a less show-downy-sounding starting time).
The location is Leonard Brothers at 701 Woodward Hts. (Enter off Woodward Heights onto Horton, veer left at the first street and turn left into parking lot. Park anywhere and enter building under 701 Awning, Room 106).
When asked why he and the Watchdogs wanted to have their own candidate’s forum, after the ones done at the Chamber of Commerce, The Ferndale Seniors, The League of Women Voters and Citizens for Fair Ferndale forums have already taken place, House declined giving a response.
Watchdogs is a new organization in Ferndale that was started by those who opposed the recent millage. The Ferndale 115 visited the Watchdogs in September when there were just four active members in attendance, still in the discussion phase over how the group was going to be structured. At that time the group faced many challenges, including lack of membership.
When asked for an update on Watchdogs, House replied “Watchdogs has grown to over 175 members and communicates mostly by email. We are in the process of setting up a new website which should be functional by the holiday season, which plans to include local Ferndale news, an all-encompassing calendar (both governmental, civic and private activities), information on getting involved in government, reporting problems and waste and general comments.
“The common thread of our group rests in as few areas; responsible frugal government, increased communication between the government and citizenry, accountability of those officials who fail to demonstrate the aforementioned.”
House added that “Watchdogs prefers to remain neutral in partisan politics and city elections. We will not endorse candidates.”
The founding members of Watchdogs were active in the recent millage election, and the group’s contact email still reflects their stance on the issue which united them in the first place “No2Headlee@gmail.com.” [NOTE: Although this is the information provided on the group’s website, House has informed us that their new email is FCWatchdogs@gmail.com. You can also find them on Facebook.]
Candidates for Mayor and City Council are expected to attend the forum, but due to prior scheduling conflicts incumbent Mayor Dave Coulter and incumbent City Council Member Mike Lennon will only be attending part of it. Mayoral candidate Ray Willis and Council candidates Sherry Wells and Dan Martin have also told House they will be there.
For more information about the candidates, to read prior election coverage, or to watch video of previous forums, check out our Election Page.
To find out more about Ferndale Watchdogs, view their website at http://ourferndale.blogspot.com/.