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Forums vital part of our democracy

Do you want to learn more about what Lawrence County government officials are doing to benefit you and to provide services that make a difference in your life? Are you interested in what our state legislators see as the challenges and solutions facing Ohio? Are you proud of our current elected officials and want to congratulate them? Are you interested in hearing new ideas and considering a change in leadership?

Lawrence County voters who may have these and other questions will have several opportunities to get answers in coming weeks. The Concerned Citizens of Burlington have scheduled their annual “Meet the Candidates Night” Sept. 27.

Individuals seeking the offices of county commission, county treasurer, state representative and state senator are among those who have been invited.

The goal is to allow citizens to better know the individuals seeking office and provide a platform for questions and answers.

This may be the first opportunity this political season, but it will not be the last.

The Lawrence County Area Chamber of Commerce is also finalizing details for a similar event, slated for Oct. 30.

Events like these are tremendous opportunities for citizens to gain a better understanding of the issues and the candidates that will drive decisions come November. Historically, events like these are relatively poorly attended and that is disappointing.

The cornerstone of a strong democracy is an educated, informed and engaged public. Community forums like these are ways to become just that.