WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- Election Day is less than a month away, and WWAY wants you to meet the candidates for Wilmington City Council. Today we sat down with Matt Hinson, who says it is time for common sense government.
Hinson is a retired Wilmington Police Department Lieutenant. He was born and raised in Whiteville; at the age of 20 he became a police officer.
"I started my career in law enforcement in 1980 with the City of Whiteville," said Hinson. "After three and a half years I took a job with the Wilmington Police Department so I came here in May of 1984."
Hinson says he decided to run because in his 30 years in law enforcement, he saw all too often that elected officials did not understand the real world.
"I'm a very conservative individual. I believe in efficient government and I believe in not being wasteful with our financial resources.”
Speaking of finances, Hinson is running a very unique campaign. He is not accepting any campaign donations and you will not see any campaign signs either.
"I am running a campaign with zero dollars," said Hinson. "I'm not independently wealthy. I do have people that have offered to donate money to my campaign and I told each one the same thing 'I don't want any money!' I don't owe any special interest groups anything. I'm just running to help Wilmington be a better place."
Hinson says one way to make the city better is to help businesses grow by using what he calls "common sense government."
"Government should be doing the thing that the public wants the government to do. We don't need excessive regulations.”
The city council hopeful gave an example.
"One of the recent controversies is the ten percent rule on signs; my personal belief is if a business owner wants to put signs in their window they should be able to," said Hinson. "I don't think the government needs to get involved in that kind of regulation. I think that it is just excessive."
As a former law enforcement officer, Hinson says he is also interested in the public safety of the whole city, and not just downtown.
"Law enforcement officers in and of themselves cannot do it all. It takes a real cooperation, a partnership, between the community at large and law enforcement. You can't just throw more cops at the problem. We need to all work together to deal with the issues that we got," Hinson said.
Come Election Day Hinson hopes his "old school" campaign will prove successful. He continues to spread his campaign message by word of mouth and free social media.
In the coming weeks WWAY will introduce you to the other Wilmington City Council candidates. Tomorrow we'll profile Frank Meares.