Ocean City Council voted unanimously Thursday night to lease the property on the corner of West Avenue and 46th Street to the American Legion for $1 a year, so it can build a bigger building.
The vote was 6-0, with Councilman Peter Guinosso, a veteran, recusing himself from the conversation during Thursday night’s meeting in City Hall.
Prior to the vote, Councilman Keith Hartzell remembered a conversation he had with Councilman Antwan McClellan after speaking with two veterans on the radio on Independence Day.
“We had two veterans on and one of them spoke about a book his son wrote about him,” Hartzell said. “He spoke at length about his experiences during the Vietnam War, and a lot of veterans don’t do that.”
Afterward, McClellan told Hartzell he was going to change his vocabulary.
“I said people always say ‘we’re going to battle or we’re going to war,’” McClellan relayed during Thursday’s discussion. “But listening to veterans speak made me realize we’re making light of those terms. I’m not going to do that anymore. I’m going to change what I say and expand my vocabulary.”
Hartzell agreed he would also change his language, saying he “didn’t deserve to use those words.”
He called the legislation a hallmark for the administration.
“When I took over the post, I promised we would get a place of our own,” Post Commander Bob Marzulli said during the public comment portion. “I want to applaud the mayor and council for their tenacity in pursuing this. I can’t tell you how grateful we all are.”