The Town of Loxahatchee Groves will hold a municipal election Tuesday, March 13. While Loxahatchee Groves Councilman Ron Jarriel was automatically re-elected without opposition, Vice Mayor Ryan Liang is facing a challenge in his bid for another three-year term in Seat 3 from attorney Byrnes Guillaume.
As Loxahatchee Groves continues to grow as a functioning government, the issues facing the town are mostly regarding its future, with the top issues being those involving development (such as the planned Palm Beach State College campus) and the town’s relationship with the Loxahatchee Groves Water Control District. After having met with both candidates, we considered their ideas and their history with the town, and believe that Groves residents would be best served by re-electing Liang.
When Liang was elected in March 2009, there was a civil war going on and the town was considerably polarized. Liang was part of the group that helped calm everything down and move the town forward. He also played a role in writing the town’s Uniform Land Development Code and ending the lawsuit with Callery-Judge Grove. Today, calls for “de-incorporation” have died down and the town maintains a good working relationship with the LGWCD.
During his interview with the Town-Crier, Liang said the town is in its best shape since incorporation, and he is right. He has a clear vision for the future that involves balancing growth and maintaining the town’s character, and he believes in a strong relationship with the water control district. Also, because of his family’s fruit tree business, Liang has deep roots and investments in the town.
As an attorney, Guillaume would bring a point of view to the council that currently is lacking, and that is definitely a positive. He seems deeply interested in improving town affairs, and should he be elected, we believe he would do a commendable job. However, Guillaume’s involvement in Loxahatchee Groves is very limited. Prior to launching his campaign, Guillaume was virtually unknown in town affairs.
Though the town is no longer in its infancy, it is still trying to find its footing in some areas, namely the relationship between the town and the LGWCD, as well as responsible growth and maintaining the town’s rural character. As an incumbent, Liang was on board during some of its early development, and there’s no reason he shouldn’t continue to serve the people of Loxahatchee Groves for another three years. While we would like to see Guillaume continue his community activism, we do not believe now is the time for him to do so in the capacity of a town councilman.
The Town-Crier endorses the re-election of Ryan Liang to Loxahatchee Groves Town Council Seat 3.