GREENBELT – The city of Greenbelt has reelected all seven members of the city council to two more years in office. As with the rest of the county, Greenbelt is preparing for big changes. With new developments, expansion and the possibility of housing the FBI all on the horizon for the city, the elections held […]
GREENBELT – The city of Greenbelt has reelected all seven members of the city council to two more years in office.
As with the rest of the county, Greenbelt is preparing for big changes. With new developments, expansion and the possibility of housing the FBI all on the horizon for the city, the elections held on Nov. 3 selected the leadership to guide the city through the upcoming transformation.
Each election cycle, the city votes for a seven-member, at-large council. Traditionally the city appoints the member with the most votes mayor, with the second most serving as mayor pro tem. Eleven candidates campaigned for the seven spots, but in the end the incumbents came through the election unscathed.
Emmett Jordan received 1,551 votes and Judith Davis received 1,411, effectively appointing them to mayor and pro tem respectively. Konrad Herling, Leta Mach, Silke Pope, Edward Puten and Rodney Roberts all had turnouts over a thousand votes.
Despite total reelection of the sitting members, Jordan said it is unfair to lump all the incumbents together.
“I hate to think of incumbents as just one blind faceless group,” Jordan said. “There’s a lot of experience and backgrounds on the Greenbelt City Council. This will be my fourth time on council, on the other end of the spectrum you’ve got Councilman Ed Putens who is actually serving 36 years.”
Jordan said each candidate for the council takes a personal approach to the election and having 11 candidates allowed for constructive conversations.
“There was a lot of vigorous discussion about the issues that are facing Greenbelt,” he said. “Everybody ran a hard race and talked to a lot of people. In Greenbelt it’s very much personal, the way that we run for council. I think more often than not it comes down to door knocking, really talking with people, interacting with people face-to-face.”
Of the 13,156 registered voters in the city, 2,039 turned out for the Nov. 3 election. The city had a total election turnout percentage of 15.5 percent, with Precinct 6 touting the highest turnout of 28.7 percent. The lowest, 3.5 percent, was in Precinct 8.
Jordan accumulated the most votes in each of the five precincts and with the early voters. He said he is continually honored by the support he receives from the residents.
“I’m really flattered and honored that so many people put their trust and confidence in my leadership. It’s been six years and I’m looking forward to serving another two years,” he said.
Jordan said he enjoys the job, though it is incredibly difficult sometimes, and he is ready to continue working hard for the city.
“I really do my best to be very accessible. People know where I live; I’m not hard to find,” he said. “Serving as an elected official, it’s a calling and I take it very seriously.”
Moving forward, Jordan said, he wants to continue the city’s new emphasis on community and economic development. He said the city is fortunate in its location, it’s stable economy and it’s community environment, and he wants utilize those strengths.
“We’ve always done well, but from a municipal point of view, we’ve never really put an emphasis on being proactive and sort of looking forward and trying to attract businesses and keep businesses here. Desirable things, not just businesses and associations but nonprofits,” Jordan said.
Through his leadership and the council’s leadership, he said, the city has started to look into the city’s potential and wants to start attracting businesses owners and residents to the city. As the city moves forward in courting the FBI consolidation, and residential developments continue around the Metro station, Jordan said, Greenbelt is looking at an exciting future.
“There are some really great things happening in Greenbelt,” he said.