The New Albany city primary elections will be held next Tuesday.

After a very quiet early campaign, candidates have been knocking on doors the past few weeks and taking part in forums and other opportunities to present their views on important issues to the voters.
We at the News Exchange have posed a variety of questions on important issues over the past months and have asked candidates to respond specifically to some of them this past week.
It’s getting to be a bit late to rehash too many of those issues but not too late to remind people of considerations they should have as they decide how to vote – as opposed to who specifically they should vote for.
When the Democrat Party sponsored their forum week before last, they handed out a sheet listing some voter hints and several of them are well worth repeating.
First of all, as an adult resident of New Albany, you should, in fact you must, vote in the first place. As the saying goes, “If you don’t vote, don’t gripe about those who get elected.”
Vote with your conscience, but first make sure you are informed as to what is right and wrong so that conscience is not operating with faulty information.
Vote for someone you can trust.
Determine each candidate’s stand on issues based on legal and moral principles.
Do not cast your vote based merely on appearance, personality or media savvy.
Do not vote for a candidate merely because he or she has been a family friend for years, because he or she needs a job, or out of sympathy.
Do not vote for someone just because of their stated religious beliefs; their actions may belie that so be sure of their true character.
Despite questions posed in the newspaper or forums, determine for yourself what the real issues are and don’t be deceived by phony but attention-getting issues.
Making some of these determinations may be more difficult with new candidates who have no history of elective public service, but the hint sheet notes records that show an inexperienced newcomer could be better than a weak or even incompetent incumbent.
“Voters need to review the current public officials’ performance. What have our current officials accomplished based on the community’s needs on one end and the community’s available resources and potentials on other end. Have they been honest and open to the public? Have they been listening to the people they are serving? Have they been good stewards? Is it really the people they are serving or just a few special interest groups? If the answer is no, then do not waste your vote.”
Abiding by these suggestions is actually fairly hard work and takes some time and research. Just remember that the people you choose will be the ones to determine (among many other things) how much city tax you pay, whether streets will be repaired, what you can do (to some degree) on you own property, what may or may not be done to improve your quality of life and the direction and effectiveness of economic development.
J. Lynn West