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410 W MAIN ST • ARDMORE, OK 73401 • (580) 223-7765 • Fax: (580) 223-7825

United States Chamber of Commerce Accredited

No Better Time to Engage!

01/28/2018

The new year has started much like the exit of the old one - with discord and polarizing disagreement among our elected officials.  The recent shutdown at the federal level and the impasse on a budget at the State level leave most of us scratching our heads.

Today more than ever, we need to engage in efforts to improve our community, state and nation.  While network television focuses on the appearance of tremendous involvement in the political process, statistics produce a much different picture.  Voter registration, especially among Oklahomans ages 18-24 has dropped by 30 percent from 2005, according to an analysis by the Tulsa World in 2015. Despite the 24/7 news coverage and social media, voters indicate they are less informed than previous generations, with many stating their distrust of the traditional media outlets for information.

The solution, while simple – greater voter engagement - is not easy.  First, all eligible persons should take an opportunity to register to vote.  A link to the Oklahoma Election Board will be at the end of this article.  If you have moved within the past few years, check to make sure that you have changed your place of residence and, perhaps, your voting location.  Engage in becoming educated on the issuesUtilize several reputable sources for this information and perhaps avoid tweets and blogs that carry a strong bias. Be involved – the local political parties welcome new participation.  Follow the activities of both your local school board and community.  Area communities are always looking for engaged citizens to serve on advisory board and commissions.  The City of Ardmore’s website has a list of its Boards and Commissions and maintains a list of individuals interested in serving.  Stay in communication with elected officials.  The Chamber’s Legislative Luncheon Series will begin in February and feature our area representatives and senator as well as city and county officials.  Prior to the primary election in June, the Chamber in conjunction with Leadership Greater Ardmore will host a forum featuring candidates for a variety of offices.

It’s a new year and one filled with possibility – engage!  Our engagement will ensure that our community, region, state and nation are destined to continue the legacy of prosperity.

Voter Registration link: https://www.ok.gov/elections/Voter_Info/Register_to_Vote/index.html