Political Capital-Jamestown

According to the Town Council website of Jamestown, the town council of Jamestown, “consists of five members elected from the Town at large” (Jamestown, 2016). These five members are: Kristine S. Trocki, Mary E. Meagher, Thomas P. Tighe, Michael G. White, and Blake A. Dickinson, of which Kristine S. Trocki is President, and Mary E. Meagher is Vice President. These members of Congress act on three main goals for the community. These three goals are, “To promote quality of life in the community, to ensure effective and accountable town government, and to ensure public health and safety” (Jamestown, 2016). Though these goals do sound great for contributing to a happy and healthy community, they don’t say much about decision making and distribution of power. These people have high political power within the community power structure based on their positional status, but does this mean that they act on that power and truly take advantage of the decisions they can make for the community? Stating that these congress members have high political power could potentially be misleading. This is due to the fact that naming them as community members who have a lot of power assumes that they actually use this power to make decisions within the community. It also misses any informal actors who have potentially high power within the community. A member of the Jamestown community who, being a resident near Jamestown, RI, I have come to identify as a having a strong influence on the community is the Jamestown Police Department. This is a well-known fact throughout Jamestown. You could ask almost any resident and they would report how big of an impact the thorough, strict, and enforcing police department has on the community. This method identifies The Jamestown Police Dept. through their reputational status.

 

 

Welcome to the Jamestown Town Council. (n.d.). Retrieved December 09, 2016, from http://jamestownri.gov/town-government/town-council/town-council-new