Public safety is my top priority. I say this because this is what I have heard from knocking on more than 10,000 doors of residents of the 2nd District. I plan to work closely with the Pikesville, Franklin and Cockeysville Police District Community Relations Councils. I also plan to work closely with the leadership of Baltimore City and with the command staff of Northwestern and Northern Police Districts in Baltimore City. This is particularly important since much of the 2nd District borders along the City/County line. My public safety agenda also includes pedestrian safety and vehicular safety (especially speeding).
I will work to have a robust capital budget for county schools. For the first time, the Baltimore will County have a hybrid school board that includes elected members from each council district. I look forward to working with the 2nd District School Board Member to help improve our schools across the county. I will work with State legislative partners to increase school funding. Funding needs for Maryland schools have changed since the Thornton Commission, and Baltimore County needs to address those changes. The Kirwin Commission has made recommendations that are fundamental to improving education in Maryland, including pre-K, highly qualified teachers who are compensated appropriately, effective technical education, and resources for at-risk students.
Baltimore County and other jurisdictions do not invest enough for its schools. This is affirmed in a recently released Goucher Poll (February 2018) which stated a majority of Democrats (81%), Independents (73%), and Republicans (51%) felt that government spends too little on public schools, a strong bipartisan coalition.
The 2nd District has great beauty in its urban and rural character. Development needs to be done right with respect to the environment, with respect to the community and with respect to the small business community (Main Street). I plan on keeping the integrity of the Urban-Rural Demarcation Line, which was established in 1967. Inside the URDL is higher density development. Outside the URDL is much lower density. So the idea is to have growth where you plan to have growth. This demarcation line is a model for the state and the entire nation in terms of how to plan for good development. I will hold that line where it is.
Much of Baltimore County’s infrastructure was built in the 1950s, especially inside the beltway. Water and sewer pipes are aging and severely strained. Some may be undersized. Funding needs to be prioritized to replace aging Einfrastructure inside the beltway. I support the $1.6 billion investment in water and sewer system upgrades. However, the funding should be used where the majority of residents live (90 percent of Baltimore County’s population still lives inside the Urban Rural Demarcation Line -URDL, and two-thirds of its land remains rural.) We must also monitor how this investment is used to protect our 200 miles of waterfront and 2,000 miles of streams and tributaries in Baltimore County.
My vision is to see a Pikesville Main Street and a Reisterstown Main Street that is full of vitality and jobs. There is also a great opportunity to grow the Pikesville commercial area by transforming the former Pikesville Armory into a use that strengthens all of Pikesville and areas beyond.
I will work to create recreational resouces for all ages and implement Aging in Place programs for older adults.