Having been in the political arena for some years now, I want to commend all of the candidates who came forward to run in the 2019 Bel Air town election.

Every board I have served on has intentionally had a blend of new members and older members with history of the organization. Based upon the current makeup of the board members not up for re-election and the demographics of those seeking a term, the Town of Bel Air could be left with little or no historical perspective. Serving a term or two or living in town for 20 years does not give you the perspective needed.


Subjects like: Why is Bel Air landlocked and unable to provide area for smart growth in the future? How is it that the citizens of Bel Air have free garbage and free appliance disposal? Did you even know it was free? How long will that last? What is the plan when the sweetheart deal runs out? How did the downtown area get free of those unsightly wooden utility poles?

Whether you call it historical perspective, maturity or legislative experience, I am the only candidate that can bring that historical element to the table. i remember the drought of the ’50s with no water in the homes from the Ma & Pa Trail to Vale Road. The downtown fire, had it not been for our well-trained volunteers, could have burned three times the area it did. Then, Main Street when it died because of the new mall. Mayor Burdette has us on firm footing again.

I do not want to make Bel Air a little metropolis but I want it to be viable, healthy and alive for those who live here. I grew up in a Bel Air neighborhood. My children, Jim III and Betsy, grew up in a Bel Air neighborhood. I want your children to have that same experience. Warm peaceful evenings with crickets, lightning bugs and music from the band shell, even conversation over the backyard fence are things we must protect.

This is my Bel Air. If you want that too, please vote for me, Capt’n Jim, Nov. 5.

JAMES V. “Capt’n Jim” McMAHON

Bel Air

Bel Air’s municipal election is Tuesday, Nov. 5.