We owe the voters of Salem and the members of the League of Women Voters of Salem (LWVS) an explanation of how our Ward 4 city councilor forum came to be canceled.
First: LWVS has absolutely no complaints about the Gallows Hill Ward 4 Salem Neighborhood Group (GHW4SNG). Their representative’s emails to us showed honesty, empathy, and respect and we express only gratitude in return.
Second: We were forced to cancel our forum because we cannot hold a forum when there are only two candidates and one reneges on their commitment to participate. Having a one-candidate “forum” is not appropriate. Our offer to host the forum on 17 October stands, but with one small change; no electioneering would be allowed owing to the necessary change of venue to the Community Life Center. In case there has been a change of heart in the past few days, we have sent one final invitation via email and requested that both candidates notify us of their intent to participate by 4:00 pm on 1 October.
Third: We invite citizens and LWVS members to read the full statement regarding the Ward 4 Cancellation, which includes a timeline, all email communications, and Councilor Flynn’s reasons for withdrawing, as of approximately 10:00 pm on 27 September 2019.
Jen Lynch, Convener and Judith Reilly, Voter Services Chair
The online statement was updated on 2 October 2019.