Recent forums for candidates running for local government seats have been well attended, both in Rockport and Waldoboro, indicating a healthy interest by voters to better understand political positions before casting ballots.

The interest in municipal issues is likewise reflected by the number of candidates seeking office — in Rockport, five candidates stepped forward to fill two seats, and in Waldoboro, eight candidates are running for two seats.

Dan Bookham, director of the Camden-Rockport-Lincolnville Chamber of Commerce, and who moderated the Rockport forum on June 6 recognized the candidates for their gumption to step forward and offer to serve in public office. It is often times a thankless and controversial job. Ask any chairman about the variety of phone calls received at any hour of the day and night to get such a sense of how complex the work can actually be.

It is the sheer act of running that Bookham cited Monday night, the getting engaged in participatory democracy, that deserves thanks.

Now it is just as incumbent on citizens to pay attention to their local government, to learn about their candidates, read about articles on warrants, to go to the polls on June 14, and to attend town meetings. This is the foundation on which we shape our local laws and customs. It is who we are. Don’t ignore it.