With the announcement of Mayor Seymour's intent not to run for re-election, the city was faced with finding a candidate of the highest caliber to fill his giant-sized shoes. In thinking of possibilities and needing some insight as to the kind of person who should be our next mayor, I sought the advice of someone I have always respected and someone with great knowledge of the city and the people in it. I asked for names of those with the attributes necessary to do the job that is expected of a mayor.
While no names immediately jumped out, he did forward a list of the general attributes a mayor should have:
1. Must have a reasonably high degree of general intelligence.
2. Must have a reasonably high IQ when it comes to how government work and the issues that it deals with.
3. Must have basic familiarity with Laconia City government.
4. Must have basic familiarity with how City Council operates as an institution.
5. Must have ability to competently chair a meeting.(very important)
6. Able to represent the City in Concord, ceremonies, etc. in an articulate way, and be reasonably personable.
7. Must be reasonably thick-skinned, doesn't run for cover when his/her actions are criticized.
8. Must have ability to commit to the time necessary to do the job.
Further, the city does not want people serving who just happen to be the only ones to sign up.
Mayor Seymour certainly met all those requirements as he spent a year before the election attending every council meeting and committee meetings to be familiar with the operations of city government and the current budgetary problems and other issues in the city.
Ed Engler comes to the top of this list in all facets. Who knows more about what is going on in Laconia and in the state than the editor of The Daily Sun. He also takes a very personal interest in his city and is usually at most civic doings, not as a newspaper person, but as a private citizen and taxpayer of Laconia. He is the person most people request to moderate meetings and forums because of his fairness, knowledge and ability to control the meeting.
While we don't always agree on issues and frankly, I don't even know if we agree on any of them, that doesn't color his coverage. I get a most generous spot in his paper for my views even when they differ from his, as do many other writers.
I know that he will always be fair and will respect my right to be different. I would welcome him to the council if I am re-elected.
Councilor Brenda Baer