In July, 2011, Hancock County citizens will have four lively opportunities in July to meet and listen to candidates running for local office: “Meet the Candidates” is scheduled for July 11th and 14th in Bay St. Louis and in the northern part of the county, the candidates will be answering questions from the public at the Diamondhead Country Club on the evenings of July 13th and July 20th.
Meet the Candidates will be held at American Legion Post 139 in Bay St. Louis (645 Green Meadow Road) from 6pm – 9pm on Monday, July 11th and Thursday, July 14th. Candidates have been invited to speak for three minutes each, discussing issues critical to economic recovery and quality of life. Refreshments will be provided by the Hancock Chamber, which is co-sponsoring the event with the Hancock County Alliance for Good Government, the Hancock Chamber Kiln Business Council and the Press Association of Hancock County.
On Monday, July 11th, Meet the Candidates in Bay St. Louis will feature candidates for Circuit Clerk, Chancery Clerk, Tax Assessor/Collector, Supervisors from all five districts, State Senate District 46 and State House District 122. On Thursday, July 14th, candidates for Coroner, Constables (Places 1, 2 and 3), Justice Court Judge (1, 2 and 3), Sheriff, County Superintendent of Education and State House Districts 93 and 95 will have an opportunity to speak.
Those running for statewide office are encouraged to attend and speak on either night. During both evenings of the Bay St. Louis forum, the Hancock Chamber will be offering information from the Circuit Clerk’s office on voting times and places, registration, absentee voting and district maps.
Lana Noonan, chairman of the Hancock County Alliance for Good Government, said the forums are offered as an opportunity for “the candidates to meet the voters and the voters to interact with those offering themselves up for public service.”
“While signs, ads, and coffee shop buzz are fine, nothing beats meeting the candidates in person,” said Noonan.
Judi Redshaw, Vice President of the Hancock Chamber and Chairman of the Chamber Kiln Business Council agrees. “We owe it to our children to educate ourselves before we vote,” she said.. “Citizens need to base these crucial votes on information, instead of signs on a street corner.”
The Diamondhead Community Association will be giving voters in their area a similar opportunity, beginning at 6:30pm on Wednesday, July 13th and Wednesday, July 20th at the Diamondhead Country Club (7600 Country Club Circle). Candidates will answer a list of identical questions, then will be invited to stay after the formal presentation to field more questions.
In Diamondhead on the 13th, candidates for Supervisor in both Districts Three and Five are expected to be on hand. On the 20th, those running for County Sheriff and County Education Superintendent have been invited. John McFarland, Marketing Director for the Sun Herald will be the moderator.
“The decisions that will be made by elected officials in the next few years will affect many future generations,” Redshaw noted. “It is up to us as responsible citizens to understand how important our choices are.”
For more information, contact the Hancock Chamber, 228.467.9048 or go to: www.hancockchamber.org