Voters Guide: Candidate Forums
Voting is more than a privilege – it’s an obligation that each of us should value. Dale Livingston, at the Harford County Board of Elections, reminds us that “every single day, people put their lives on the line so that we can vote.” The obligation to participate in free elections includes a challenge, of course, to make informed choices. To help us do that, two local groups will be hosting Candidate Forums this fall.
The League of Women Voters (LWV), the nation’s most respected independent non-partisan organization, will host their Voter Forum on October 15, from 6:30-9:30pm at Harford Community College, Room 132 Edgewood Hall. This will be an opportunity to hear the views of candidates for the offices of County Executive and County Council President, as well as for State Senator and Delegate for Legislative District 34.
LWV posed the following questions to each of these candidates. In addition to their answers (which are available at vote411.org), audience members will be able to submit other questions to the candidates on topics of concern.
Questions for candidates for County Executive, Barry Glassman (R) and Maryann Connaghan Forgan (D) and County Council President: Patrick Vincenti (R) and Frank “Bud” Hines (D):
- How does your experience prepare you for the duties of this office?
- What programs within the county’s budget should be increased or decreased?
- What changes if any are needed in the county’s land use policies?
- What steps will you take to improve support for the public schools?
- What steps should the county government take to encourage economic development and job growth?
- What steps would you take to increase the availability of affordable housing for county residents?
- How would you address issues such as traffic congestion, transportation needs and improvements in public facilities in the county?
Questions for candidates for State Senator, Robert Cassilly (R) and Mary-Dulaney James (D), and State Delegate, Glen Glass (R), J.D. Russell (R), Steve Johnson (D) and Mary Ann Lisanti (D):
- How does your experience prepare you for the duties of this office??
- What changes, if any, do you support in the process for drawing congressional and legislative district lines in MD?
- What are the most significant environmental challenges and how would you address them?
- What policies will you support to address discrimination based on race, gender, religion, disability or poverty?
- What educational policies would you support and how will you fund them?
- What are the most significant health challenges facing MD and how will you address them?
- What are your transportation priorities and how should they be funded?
The Caucus of African-American Leaders of Harford County will host a Candidate Forum on October 19, 6:30-9:30pm at AMES United Methodist Church, 112 Baltimore Pike in Bel Air. If you’ve ever wondered what the circuit court judges do or what are the roles of the states attorney, sheriff, register of wills and clerk of the circuit court – this is an opportunity to learn the vision of the candidates for these offices.
Content experts introduce each segment, explaining the role and responsibilities of each office and present specific questions to each candidate, who will be given 3-5 minutes to share their platform. In addition, questions will be collected from the audience.
Invited speakers include:
Harford County Sheriff: Sheriff Jeffrey R. Gahler and Christopher C. Boardman
Harford County Circuit Court Judges: Paul W. Ishak, Lawrence F. Kreis, Jr., Diane Adkins-Tobin and Thomas
Harford County States Attorney; Albert Peisinger and Carlos R. Taylor
Register of Wills: Derek K. Hopkins and Jo Wanda Strickland Lucas
Clerk of the Circuit Court: James Reilly and Sabra M. Kurth
For more information on the Candidate Forum, contact Jim Thornton, 410.652.7468, email@example.com.
Voters Guide: What’s on the Ballot
For the General Gubernatorial Election on November 6, we’ll be voting for Governor and Lt. Governor, Comptroller and State Attorney General, as well as US Senator and Representative in the US Congress, State Senator and State Delegate. We’ll also be electing our County Executive, County Council President, County Councilmen, Harford States Attorney, Sheriff, Register of Wills, Clerk of the Circuit Court, District Court Judges and Board of Education members. Sample ballots are available at the Board of Elections website: harfordvotes.info.
There are two proposed Amendments to the Maryland State Constitution. The full text of each Amendment is available at harfordvotes.info and on the Sample Ballots. This is a very brief summary of the Amendments and should not replace consideration of the actual wording of the proposed Amendments.
Question 1 is a Constitutional Amendment requiring commercial gaming revenues that are for Public Education to supplement spending for education in Public Schools. This amendment is in the interests of transparency for the annual State Budget. If passed, it would require the Governor to include revenues from video lottery operation licenses and other commercial gaming as supplemental funding for pre-K through Grade 12 in public schools, in an amount above the level of State funding already provided by the Bridge to Excellence in Public Schools Act of 2002.
Question 2 relates to registration and voting at precinct polling places. Currently the Maryland Constitution requires that voter registration close prior to Election Day. The proposed Amendment would authorize the General Assembly to extend same-day voter registration to include Election Day itself. If passed, this provision would have an impact on voter registration for the Primary and General Elections in 2020.
2018 Gubernatorial General Election
Save the Dates!
9pm, October 16, Harford County Board of Elections
133 Industry Lane, Forest Hill | 410.638.3565
October 25 – November 1, 10am-8pm
- Aberdeen Fire Department, 21 South Rogers Street, Aberdeen
- McFaul Activity Center, 525 W. MacPhail Road, Bel Air
- Edgewood Library, 629 Edgewood Road, Edgewood
- Jarrettsville Library, 3722 Jarrettsville Road, Jarrettsville
November 6, 7am-8pm.
Your polling place is shown on your voter registration card. It can also be found through the Harford County Board of Elections website www.harfordvotes.info.
Recent polling center locations changes:
- Precinct 4-02 to Youths Benefit Elementary School, 1901 Fallston Road, Fallston
- Precinct 1-02 to Trinity Lutheran School, 1100 Philadelphia Road, Joppa
Affected voters will receive additional notice of the polling place change by mail with an updated Voter Notification Card.
For more details on the registration and voting process, including how to change your registration, locate your voting precinct, a complete list of candidates and more, visit www.harfordvotes.info or call the Board of Elections office at 410.638.3564.
In addition to a Candidates Forum being hosted by the Harford County League of Women Voters later this fall at Harford Community College, other community groups are also planning opportunities for us to meet the candidates, learn their views and help form our voting decisions for the General Gubernatorial Election on November 6. At the time of going to press, details for the various Candidates Forums had not been finalized, with the exception of a Forum hosted by the Route 40 Business Association, on September 12, at Waters Edge Event Center.
The event will include dinner and a social hour, beginning at 5pm, with the Candidates Forum, moderated by Bob Bloom, beginning at 6pm. Submit questions in writing, either in advance or at the event. Because the focus of the Forum is issues affecting the Route 40 corridor, candidates for State Senators for Districts 7 and 34 and State Delegates for Districts 7 and 34A have been invited, in addition to candidates for County Executive, President of the County Council and County Council members for Districts A through F. Tickets are $50 for members of the Association; $60 for non-members. Contact 410.618.7399 or email Route40business@gmail.com.