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Ovilla Mayor nixes candidate forum

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The Ellis County Press

OVILLA - 'We will not be having a forum this year,' announced Mayor Bill Turner in answer to his challenger's request for a mayoral candidate's forum in Ovilla.

The question about having a public forum for the two mayoral candidates to present issues to the voters became an occasion for Mayor Bill Turner to denounce opponent George Mulholland's intentions in suggesting such a forum.

'I have no desire to cooperate with Mr. Mulholland and the way it was presented to me,' Turner said to resident Jo Ann Graham.

Graham asked about having a forum for the two mayoral candidates during the citizens' appearances at last week's city council meeting.

Turner said he would not accept the proposed date, Thursday, April 17 because it was his wife's birthday.

Turner said he would be informing voters about his candidacy and opinions on issues through local newspapers soon.

When George Mulholland took the lectern during citizens' appearances to speak about ordinance-writing and city commissions, Turner gave more information about his refusal to participate in a forum.

'Mr. Mulholland, we have heard from you for six years and you have nothing to say that isn't negative about what we do,' Turner said.

'You went to the press and wanted them to intimidate me into this,' he said.

Mulholland had written a letter to Mayor Turner on April 6 to suggest a particular date for a candidate's forum at city hall.

Mulholland stated in the letter he had contacted local newspapers to determine which date reporters could attend the forum.

He also said he would contact local papers with an announcement of the proposed event.

Mulholland suggested cooperation with Turner on details such as the program, the program leader and timekeeper.

Two years ago, when Turner, then mayor pro-tem, and Mulholland were candidates for the mayoral post, Turner refused to participate in a forum proposed by Mulholland.

This year, Mulholland said he had sought a third party, such as a civic group, to sponsor a forum, but had been unsuccessful in finding any sponsors.

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