Congratulations to Wellington Mayor Bob Margolis and councilmen Matt Willhite and John Greene. It is with much relief that we get the election behind us. It was an election unlike any other in the past, and hopefully we will not have the big money syndrome that has plagued this nation again here locally. It is not a positive for a community to have one man decide an election for so many.
The three winners named above ran on a platform of being against issues: equestrian development, inspector general lawsuit, commercial development and other minor items that seemed to cross their path. But like all politicians today, the against issues will go away quickly. We have “solved” the lawsuit, and are taking up the equestrian issue, and with time I am sure the council can get rid of all commercial development in the community and make us a pure bedroom community that we all desire, but that may take a few more months.
So now that big question is, with three years and nine months left on their terms, what are the mayor and the council for, now that they have addressed the against issues? Wellington is a community that is one of the most fiscally sound in the state, with a very low millage rate. It has a high level of service with outstanding physical appearance, first rate schools, an outstanding parks and recreation program and facilities, a lean staff and considered one of the top 100 communities to live within the United States. In addition, it has the honor of having the best equestrian and polo facilities in the country and possibly the world. OK, guys — where do we go from here?
Councilman Greene seems like an intelligent and thoughtful individual, with good intentions, and I hope he becomes his own man with ideas to move the village forward. Councilman Willhite has been against everything and every issue that has come forward and has never seen a motion that he wasn’t against. He can be counted on for nothing but obstructionism and negativism in every issue that comes before the council.
The real question mark is Mayor Margolis. Bob was considered a regular guy who wanted to serve and was extremely popular as he coached youth athletics. He was a real advocate for public improvements on the Parks & Recreation Advisory Board, championing issues like Village Park, neighborhood parks, the dog park, Tiger Shark Cove and the horse trail extension. Elected to council twice, Bob was very active pushing our community to look better, perform better, and was always an advocate for transparency in finances and the budget. Bob never lost his touch with the average resident, and stayed connected with his base and supporters throughout his two terms as a councilman.
Time changes all things, and the residents await a plan of where Wellington is going in the next 20 years. Nothing can stay the same, only move in different directions. When our new council is through being “against things,” we anxiously await what they are for, and what their vision of Wellington is for the future.
And thank you, inspector general. After nine months of investigation, over $100,000 spent at the local and county level, they have identified $429 of incorrect expenses in the Village of Wellington. Great job! I can’t wait for your next adventure.
Steve Haughn, Wellington