The following statement was provided by the political candidate for The Island Eye News
My name is Joshua Ryan Langdon Hooser. I am running to be the next Mayor of Isle of Palms because these last 18 months have taught me the importance of having local representation for my values in my government. Local action has national impact. I am an attorney by trade, a father and a husband by God’s blessing, and a patriotic citizen ready to work hard to Keep IOP Great in these challenging times. I graduated from the College of Charleston with three bachelor degrees in Political Science, Communications, and Spanish. I lived in Spain twice and worked at a nonprofit in Washington, DC before law school. I received my Juris Doctor from the University of Cincinnati College of Law. As a lawyer, I have counseled local governments, drafted proposed local ordinances and state statutes, and represented businesses and nonprofits on a wide range of issues. I am ready to use this experience as IOP Mayor. My family has owned property on Isle of Palms since before Hurricane Hugo and the construction of the IOP connector. My husband and I chose to live here full-time to raise our children near my parents and grandmother – who all live down the street from us in Wild Dunes. We got married on the island, and our children were born here. IOP has long captured our hearts and minds. I want nothing more than this island to succeed, and I feel blessed by God to be in a position to help. As I see it, the main issue facing the City of Isle of Palms is the rapid development on and off the island. The proximity to beautiful cities like Charleston, Mount Pleasant, and Sullivan’s Island provides a benefit to us, but it brings along certain challenges that require immediate attention to protect island living.
While Isle of Palms is an island, moving forward we can not act like we are alone. We can and we should successfully manage and leverage the growth. First, we must positively engage the region’s leaders to find solutions to the rapid growth. As mayor, I will make it my #1 priority to get the City out of litigation and into productive negotiations. For example, we should engage the region to fund an unbiased, comprehensive study to research the impacts of this development on public safety, parking, multimodal traffic (i.e. car, bicycle, golf cart), drainage/storm/ flood threats, and public beach access. We cannot afford to kick this can down the road any further or to fight with the county and state. Second, we must strictly follow the law when it comes to basic governing principles such as responding to public records requests, managing city-owned property, and selecting crucial positions like the fire chief. The City has rested on its laurels for far too long. Taxpayer money has been wasted on poorly written leases, unnecessary litigation in court, and personal squabbles. Hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars have gone down the drain to multiple law firms representing the City. We must stop the bleeding, and I am uniquely equipped to help turn the tide. Third, we need to focus on the spirit of being good neighbors no matter if people live on the island, within the Wild Dunes gates, or in adjacent cities like Mount Pleasant. For the first time in memory, a large contingency of people running for local office are Wild Dunes residents. It is time we come together. Division amongst us based on our addresses does nothing but harm the island and the region. We are all in this together. Let’s act like it.
The future is bright! I look forward to talking and seeing you on the campaign trail. If you would like to text or talk on the phone, my personal cell phone number is 843-469-1428. Please register to vote by the end of September so you can vote on November 2, 2021. When you head to the ballot box, I humbly ask for your support to serve as the next mayor for Isle of Palms.