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The Norman City Council has an opening much sooner than expected.

On Thursday, Ward 5 councilwoman Sereta Wilson announced her resignation, effective Aug. 11.

“It is with sadness and a bit of trepidation, and some ego soothing, that I have decided to resign my seat on council because my new (100 year old) house is located in Ward 4,” Wilson wrote on Facebook.

In her post on social media, Wilson described her time as a representative as “rewarding” and admitted “trying to maintain a sense of normalcy whilst watching my community sort of crumble around me.” And she called on our community to find a way to heal itself.

We would like to thank Wilson for her service on the City Council.

The charter states the City Council can appoint an interim member or hold a special election. Norman Mayor Breea Clark is expected to be forming a selection committee to nominate a replacement, with the process completed by the end of August.

Wilson’s surprise announcement arrived during a volatile time in our city government. Unite Norman has filed petitions to recall our mayor and wards 1,3,5 and 7.

Norman voters who wanted Wilson recalled now have an opportunity to step up and serve Ward 5.

During this contentious time, we urge Normanites to engage a civil debate about the problems affecting our community now and in the future.

This Opinion page will continue to offer a forum for issue-oriented discussion of diverse views without devolving into personal attacks.

It is easy to complain and be a constant naysayer, but it is much harder to come up with solutions.

It also is more difficult to analyze deeply, try to foresee unintended consequences, communicate effectively with constituents and build a true consensus to move the community forward.

Low voter turnout is a chronic problem. Whether or not a special recall election is held in January, the regular election for the City Council positions in question will be held just one month later. 

We encourage all citizens to register, research candidates and then exercise your precious right to vote.  If you don’t vote, and you don’t like the candidate who is elected, you have no one to blame but yourself.

The Norman Transcript Editorial Board includes Publisher Mark Millsap, Editor Rob Collins and guest members Brandi Coyner, Keith Gaddie, Bianca Gordon, Kathy Haney, Marc Nuttle, Michael Ridgeway and Nick Wu. For comments or questions, please email editor@normantranscript.com.

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