Monday, January 30, 2023

A Counter-Offer


There are plenty of good local stories to write about right now. My brain appears to be unwilling to write about them this morning. My apologies. 

I’m going to point you towards this piece by local blogger Frank Hecker instead.

A better way to elect the Howard County Board of Education, Civility and Truth, 1/28/2023

Hecker looks at a proposal from Delegates Jen Terrasa and Dr. Chao Wu to use Ranked Choice Voting in the BOE election process.

AN ACT concerning Howard County - Board of Education Elections - Ranked-Choice Voting

Ho. Co. 16-23

FOR the purpose of authorizing the Howard County Council to adopt, by law, a ranked choice voting method for elections for the county board of education; and generally relating to the use of ranked-choice voting for elections for the Howard County Board of Education.

The beginning of Ho.Co. 16-23, legislation proposed by Delegates Chao Wu and Jen Terrasa to authorize the use of ranked choice voting in Howard County Board of Education elections.

You may recall the proposed legislation from delegate Courtney Watson and State Senator Clarence Lam which emerged right after the midterm elections in November.

No Rest After the Election, Village Green/Town², 11/19/2022

I think it’s safe to say that their plan, which requires that two members of the BOE be appointed rather than elected, was met with a combination of healthy skepticism and downright hostility. Ho.Co. 16-23 appears to be a counter-offer, of sorts. Mr. Hecker gives it a thorough treatment.

It’s definitely worth your time.

Still, I can’t help feeling that I’d be more enthusiastic about this process if the impetus had come from the community.*

*To clarify: the unexpected appearance of Watson/Lam proposed legislation felt far from community-driven to me. Consequently, I’m rather disgruntled about the whole business. Nonetheless, I agree that the ranked choice proposal bears more serious consideration. I’m grateful to Frank Hecker for shining a light on it in this way. 

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