I would like to publicly thank several nonprofit organizations that offer opportunities for citizens to meet, ask questions and get to know candidates for public office.
Thanks to the Port Orchard Chamber of Commerce, the League of Women Voters, North Mason Community Voice, the Bremerton Area Chamber of Commerce, North Mason Chamber of Commerce and the Kitsap Alliance for consistently — election year after election year — arranging candidate forums to help Kitsap’s electorate cast informed and thoughtful votes.
It’s good for the voters. They ask questions, learn the issues and discuss their thoughts and concerns with each other and those “public servant” hopefuls. It’s good for the candidates; they get to meet their new “bosses” eyeball to eyeball.
There is no charge to attend these events. Volunteers offer them as a public service, setting aside partisanship as best they can. The forums do require organizing. Volunteers have to find a venue. Sometimes it requires renting a hall for the evening — a good location with lots of parking and central to the county. Then they have to work with the candidates, juggling schedules to make it work. Everybody wants a good crowd so they must get the word out.
They all want the same thing. They want you to be there. They want the candidates to be there. They want an active dialogue and they want people to walk away from the event feeling like their evening was well spent.
Please support these forums. They help make government better. They help make us better citizens.