Mayoral candidate Devon Scott hosts first volunteer interest meeting
Mayoral candidate Devon Scott convened his first campaign volunteer meeting on July 22, at Bottega Art & Wine in the Brooklyn Arts District. Following his Thursday campaign announcement, Scott gave his ear to prospective community volunteers on Monday to hear their vision for the campaign’s operation and for Wilmington’s future.
The varied group filled the homey art and wine bar on North Fourth with supportive friends, community partners, community members, and local activists passionate about Devon’s candidacy. The core of campaign volunteers quickly galvanized around his message of “Citizens over Cement,” in a catchy critique of the rapid growth in development occurring under incumbent Wilmington mayor, Bill Saffo.
Development has become a hot button issue in the 2019 mayoral race, the discussion has featured prominently this year in city-led conversations with the community and local headlines as expensive housing and mixed-use developments continue to appear. Candidate Scott explained that he feels Wilmington has been doing “a great job of taking care of people that don’t live here yet, meanwhile the city has been leaving its current citizens under-served.”
Housing costs in Wilmington remain high following the battering Hurricane Florence paid to the region late last year.
Longtime Wilmington residents may also hear echoes in this campaign message of another grassroots push which launched during Saffo’s tenure: Stop Titan Cement, a community-led effort to stop the construction of a cement plant on the Cape Fear River.
Scott says that while this association isn’t intentional, the progressive activist community in Wilmington was shaped by this former fight. Even the Cape Fear Economic Development Committee, of which Scott is a former board member, has its roots in this battle over water quality.