Debates, Forums Planned Ahead of May Elections

The Democratic and Republican clubs are planning a pair of debates, while the Ocean City Community Association has forums planned for April 23.

The Ocean City Democratic and Republican plans have two debates planned to give the residents the most information possible on their prospective candidates heading into the May 13 elections.

First up is the debate involving the five candidates for the open at-large council seats April 29 at the high school, 7-9 p.m.

The debate between Mayor Jay Gillian and challenger Ed Price is set for May 7 at the high school, 7-9 p.m.

The Ocean City Community Association also has two forums set for the main lecture hall in the library on April 23. The forum for Council candidates takes place at 6 p.m., followed by the mayoral forum at 7 p.m.

For more on Gillian, click here.

For more on Price, click here.

Council incumbents Michael Allegretto and Keith Hartzell and challengers Michael Hyson, Peter Madden and Eric Sauder are pursuing three open seats. Incumbent Scott Ping chose to pursue re-election.

Hartzell was first elected in 2006. In 2010, he earned 2,172 votes. While he has publicly disagreed with the administration in the past, he said both sides recognize the passion the other has in working to improve the city. He said compromise is part of his job and the administration and council are working well together overall.

He also said he enjoys being in a position to help people when they need it and when they deserve it.

Allegretto was first elected in 2006. In 2010, he was the leading vote-getter with 2,294 votes. He highlights the need to continue working on recreation projects, promoting tourism and make sure current and future capital projects are finished at the lowest possible price to the taxpayer.

Hyson has lived in Ocean City for two years as a full-time resident, and spent 10 years as a second home property owner. He is retired after 22 years of service with the Philadelphia Police Department.

He volunteers with the American Legion, is an O.C.C.A. member and has applications pending for Utility Advisory Commission and Local Assistance Board.

He has been married for 33 years.

They have two adult children and a granddaughter. His son, Greg, and his wife, Bethany, currently serve in the U.S. military.

Madden has been involved with the city’s Board of Education since moving to the city, and feels it’s time to get involved in city politics.

“The Board of Education is in good shape,” Madden said. “I love the city and I want to see it continue to move forward. I want to help make the place where I live better and I’m going to do the best I can.”

He said there are things he would like to see fixed, and he knows he could get elected and realize there are restrictions on what he wants to do, similar to when he was elected to the school board.

“It may take a few years to get things changed, and I may have to work within the system,” Madden said.

He is married with four children is a real estate agent with Fox Roach.

Sauder is a former audit officer and systems analyst and has been a resident of Ocean City for 10 years. His family’s owned property in the city since 1963.

He frequently attends council, planning board and zoning board meetings.

“After years of community activism, I have come to realize that the only way to effect change is from within,” Sauder said. “There are so many opportunities to improve our city that are not explored. What we need is a “can do” attitude. What we say we can’t do is often defined by what we didn’t want to do, what we didn’t do or what we never  tried to do. I believe you only accomplish what you set out to do.”

Anthony Bellano March 30, 2014 at 11:40 AM
CLARIFICATION: Michael Hyson's son, Greg, and Greg's wife, Bethany, currently serve in the military. A previous version of the story incorrectly stated Michael's wife serves in the military.


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