Calling all Ashland voters.
The six candidates for Ashland Board of City Commissioners and Chuck Charles, the unopposed mayor, will be answering questions in a candidate forum Tuesday night sponsored by the Human Rights Commission.
The forum will take place at 6:30 p.m. at the teleconfrence room at Ashland Community and Technical College.
The past few forums have had lower-than-expected turnouts, said Carol Jackson, who is heading up the forum for the Human Rights Commission.
“You always plan a party and hope everybody shows up,” Jackson said. “Sometimes they do and sometimes they don’t. The turnout is not we expected the past couple of times. We try to get the word out by putting notices in the newspaper and sending notices to local churches.
“I can say we’ve had success with the people in the community that do come out. They learn a lot about the candidates.”
Jackson said the forum is the perfect opportunity for Ashland voters to find out more about the candidates running for the city offices.
“All you have to do is ask,” she said. “We’ll have cards for the audience to write questions on. We may not have time to ask every question, but we’ll try our best.”
Two panel members will also be asking questions of the candidates, Jackson said. The panel includes reporter Ken Hart of The Independent and Randy Yohe of WSAZ. Yohe will also serve as the forum moderator.
“This gives people in the community to ask questions about the candidates and what their goals are for the city,” Jackson said.
The forum will start with a question-and-answer session for Charles, the mayor-in-waiting who is running unopposed. The former president of Summer Motion has been proactive in his campaign despite not having an opponent.
After Charles answers questions, the six city commission candidates will take the hot seat. Four incumbents — Tom Cantrell, Larry Brown, Kevin Gunderson and Marty Gute — will be joined by Tim Duley and former commissioner Cheryl Spriggs.
“They’ll be facing an audience of their voters,” Jackson said. “They want to hear what you have to say about what your plans are for the community.”
The forum is a way for Ashland voters to participate in the election process, Jackson said.
“We hope we have a big turnout,” she said.
MARK MAYNARD can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (606) 326-2648.
Calling all Ashland voters.
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