Candidates for public office in Mathews presented their platforms to voters and answered questions at two forums held over the past week—one sponsored by the West Mathews Civic League in Bohannon last Wednesday, Oct. 16, and one sponsored by the Middle Peninsula League of Voters at Mathews Memorial Library on Sunday.
Two candidates for supervisor will have their names on the Nov. 5 ballot—incumbent O.J. Cole of Moon and fellow independent candidate Jack White of New Point. However, G.C. Morrow of Onemo recently decided to throw his hat in the ring as a write-in candidate for one of two available seats on the board—Cole’s seat and the seat being vacated by Neena Putt, who is making a bid for the Virginia House of Delegates.
Cole reminded residents that he has served as a supervisor for two terms and has become familiar with county policies, procedures and methodologies. It’s the board’s job to handle the business of the county and to legislate with ordinances, he said, but only regarding matters that are specifically permitted by the Virginia General Assembly, since Virginia is a Dillon Rule state.
Although he ran as a Republican in his previous two campaigns, Cole said he is running as an independent this time around. While he was born in an era when "you had to be conservative," Cole said that the status of state and national politics has become "repulsive."
"It’s designed to do something to someone, not for someone," he said. "It’s time to do things for people."
Cole pointed out all the things the county has accomplished during his tenure on the board, including Main Street projects, renovations to New Point Lighthouse, and repairs to the Gwynn’s Island bridge.