All Kent County, Maryland. All the time. A discussion of everything about our slice of paradise.
At some point a discussion becomes a serial discussion along its parallax. And... 'what's next?' for our towns and hinterlands individually and our county as a singular entity keeps bouncing down the road like a string of kicked cans. Maybe we're just stuck in 'Ground Hog Day'. Maybe we're always trying to do the same things... just differently. Maybe we're afraid of the future if we change the present. And maybe... the Chestertown Tea Party best exemplifies our collective community.
Our first Tea Party was in 2001. The veterans were giving us angles on all kinds of strategies for parking... for taking in the events... for managing the week-end itself. And the event seemed to consume everyone... at least everyone we knew. Needless to say in 2019 we know lots more folks... with a larger range of interests. The common denominator now is that it's not Tea Party week-end anymore... it's Memorial Day week-end. I'm not sure when the ink blot flipped, but it was probably about 5 or 6 years ago... with the full blot just manifesting itself in the last few years.
As a personalization... we go to other events specifically Chestertown, but avoid the Tea Party's, especially Friday and Saturday, like a plague, BUT we go to... First Fridays... Harry Potter... Dickens... DownRigging... Farmers Market... Bocce... with a sense of attachment. And it has dawned on me that this attachment is the difference. The Tea Party has become an event, planned by locals, to entertain and attract non-local visitors to mostly non-local attractions/vendors/performers, etc. It's not ours really, especially for lots of non-Chestertownies.
Maybe we'll always be a stew rather than a melting pot. Maybe that's who we'll always be. Maybe accepting that is better than trying to do something different. Maybe.
We don't have the political will to even move towards a Howard County type of uni-body type of governance. But... what if we had an honest and open discussion about the efficiencies that it would bring... AND the hesitations that folks would have about one straw stirring our political pot. We have 28 electeds (5 for each town and 3 CC's). Try ranking those and come up with the 5 best. Try picturing a full-time County Executive... an elected one.
Yeah, it would be very important to got to a 6 member board. I would have three districts and two at large and the County Executive.
In any case, shouldn't we at least collectively be asking why our revenue has been virtually flat for the past ??? years and why it looks like a modest 1.5% growth over the next ??? years? IF you somehow answer something other than 'yes'. Be happy living living in bliss.