There are 25 Democratic candidates running for 11 seats on the Prince George's County Council in the Sept. 12 primary.
Each claims that as a council member he or she will try to enact legislation to solve the county's problems. All agree that taxes are the number one problem.
But they give different answers when asked what the number two problem is: Schools, open government, the police force, minority hiring in the county and organization politics are mentioned most often.
Eight of the 11 incumbents are seeking reelection. They are all running on the county Democratic Organization ticket along with three newcomers hand-picked by the organization in June.
The three incumbents not seeking reelection are Council Chairman Francis W. White, who decided to run for the House of Delegates after being ousted from the organization ticket; Samuel W. Bogley, who is running for lieutenant governor, and Darlene Z. White, who decided not to run for reelection after being removed from the organization ticket.
Few people in the county completely understand the voting procedure in council races. There are five district races and six at-large races. However, everyone in the county votes for 11 council members. The winner in each district and the top six vote-getters among the at-large candidates advance to the general election.
On the Republican side there are 11 unopposed candidates.
Here is a look at the Democratic candidates. DISTRICT 1
Frank P. Casula, 58, the incumbent, is running on the organization ticket and has taken the same line as County Executive Winfield M. Kelly Jr. on most issues.
He favors Kelly's tax freeze, but only as a temporary measure until taxes can be reduced; believes Kelly has done a good job improving police-community relations, and thinks Prince George's already has "its fair share" of low-income housing and should concentrate now on middle-class and upper-class housing.
Janet C. Prochazka, 37, is a Greenbelt civic activist who is running as an independent Democrat. Prochazka has been on the Citizens Advisory Committee to the bi-county water supply task force.
She sees the tax freeze as "an unrealistic approach to solving fiscal problems." She thinks that to reduce taxes, duplicated services can be eliminated in many areas and believes the size of the County Council should be reduced. District 2
There is no primary here because incumbent Parris N. Glendening is unopposed on the Democratic side. District 2
Gerard T. McDonough, Kelly's closest council ally, faces more opposition in the primary than any incumbent, with three opponents.
McDonough, 31, is often the man who introduces Kelly-favored legislation to the council and acts as the executive's spokesman during council debates. He was upset when neither the AFL-CIO nor the police political action committee endorsed him, but he is still considered a strong favorite for reelection.
Betty G. Burnett, 40, a self-described homemaker from Hyattsville, has been a long-time supporter of property tax relief movements in the county.
She does not "entirely support" Kelly's 1979 tax freeze, however, saying she feels the county's expenditures can be cut without affecting services.
Harold T. MacDonald, 61, a retired defense department employee, sees the county as having a poor image in the media and feels it is imperative that it erase its "redneck image."
MacDonald opposes Kelly's tax freeze proposal and also opposes Kelly's anti-middle and low-income housing stance.
Robert W. O'Conner, 57, currently Cheverly mayor, is a retired Treasury Department employe. He is viewed by Democratic insiders as the man with the best chance to upset McDonough in the primary.
He served on the Cheverly Town Council for three terms before becoming mayor. He sees Prince George's as "becoming a county of retirees from government," and adds that the current inflation is making it difficult for them to remain - thus the decrease in the county's population. DISTRICT 4
Ann Lombardi, 42, replaced Darlene White on the organization ticket. She is a member of the Prince George's County General Hospital board of directors and is one of the few candidates in the county who lives in Upper Marlboro.
Like virtually all the slate candidates, she favors Kelly's property tax freeze and development plans. She sees property tax increases as a major factor in the county population decrease but also believes many families fled public school integration. (Court-ordered busing began in Prince George's in 1973).
Dorothy Will Thomas, a 42-year-old teacher, believes the tax burden on the property owner is too high and should be spread more evenly. She believes the current tax structure provides little incentive to people to buy a home in Prince George's.
Thomas also thinks that the police themselves have made efforts to improve their relationships with the black community, but adds, "I cannot say the same for the county administration." DISTRICT 5
Incumbent William B. Amonett is unopposed in the primary. AT-LARGE
Wanda C. Brown, 26, sees the major issues as taxes, crime and education. She thinks county schools are over-crowded and more schools should be built.
Brown has worked in anti-drug programs and believes the drug problem is a major one. She also thinks much work still needs to be done to ease police-community tensions.
Lawrence B. Daniel Sr., 51, a self-described "rank outsider" in county politics, is president of the county Housing Authority Advisory Council and a staunch supporter of senior citizens' rights.
He also thinks the county police department should be increased by one-third, with most of the new employes being blacks in order to bring racial balance to the department, which is currently 91 percent white. He sees the support he is getting from senior citizens as his major chance for an upset.
Harold D. Frigard, 47, a legislative aide to Bogley, is running at Bogley's urging. Bogley was known as something of a maverick on the council, often voting against the party line on issues, and Frigard would like to take his place in that role.
Frigard thinks many of the council members are not "true representatives of the people" because they are chosen as part of a slate. Like Bogley, he is a fiscal conservative, who sees government as becoming too large and thinks a fiscal analysis should be done on each department.
Francis B. Francois, twice council chairman, is generally regarded as the most influential member of the council, often convincing other members to vote his way in spite of their objections.
Francois, 44, was encouraged by many to oppose Kelly for county executive but decided against it, feeling he would be risking his strong position on the council.
He is also known as the man on the council most likely to stand up to Kelly on controversial issues.
David G. Hartlove Jr., 59, an incumbent, is regarded by many in the southern part of the county, which he represents (he is from Clinton), as their conservation voice on the council.
Although he has been known to disagree with Kelly on some issues, he is a member of the slate, has high visibility as a former council chairman and, like Francois, is considered a heavy favorite for reelection.
Arthur B. Haynes, 43, says he wants a seat on the council because, "Right now there is no true black representation and I believe I'd be a better representative of the black and the poor."
Haynes called the members of the organization slate "puppets of the Democratic establishment" and described himself as a product of the civil rights movement.
Haynes is a junior high school teacher.
Horace J. Hillsman, 39, has no previous experience in public office and is radically opposed to almost everything Kelly has done in office.
He is opposes Kelly's development policies because "low- and moderate-income families have a right to live in this county."
He still sees the police department as a major problem in the county and answered "Hell no!" when asked if he believes the county administration has taken sufficient steps to alleviate the problems of the past.
Sarah Ada Koonce, 55, an incumbent running on the organization slate, is kiddingly referred to as "silent Ada" by council observers because she never takes part in council debates.
Like the other incumbents running with Kelly, she is a staunch defender of his tax freeze program, his housing development policies and county handling of the police problems.
John A. Lally, 28, press secretary the last four years, has high visibility and is well known in the county but not always in a positive vein.
Kelly's spokesman for four years, often on unpopular positions, Lally is widely viewed as someone who would simply continue to be a Kelly mouth-piece on the council. Name recognition should help him considerably on a crowded ballot.
Deborah R. Marshall, 27, was handpicked by the Kelly people to add another black to the slate. Marshall, is much like Lally, a strong Kelly loyalist.
She is currently the executive director of the Prince George's County Commission for Women and would be the first black woman on the council if she is elected.
Sue V. Mills, 42, a member of the school board for eight years, is one of the independent Democrats given a solid chance of beating one of the slate candidates for a spot on the Democratic ticket in the general election.
An outspoken opponent of busing while on the board, she has the voter recognition that most of the independents lack. She has also received the endorsements from the AFL-CIO and the police political action committee.
William W. Wildman, 59, a former City Council member and mayor of Bowie, is an independent Democrat who expects to receive most of his support in the Bowie area.
Wildman is critical of Kelly's handling of the police problem and his development policies in housing. He thinks county services have deteriorated in many areas in recent years and believes a "responsive council that will realistically approach solutions without consideration of political expediency" is needed to stop the slide.
Floyd E. Wilson Jr, 42, currently council vice chairman and the only black ever elected to the County Council, is on the Kelly slate and is also a Kelly man on almost all issues.
Wilson has received endorsements from most of the major groups and is considered a heavy favorite for reelection.
Wilbert R. Wilson, 34, supervisor of the drug intervention counseling action program in the county, is an independent Democrat and, like most independents, feels the organization is a major issue in the campaign. He believes that citizens in the county are "fed up with back-door politics and having their leaders chosen for them."
John W. Wrightson, 28, a juvent counselor for the state, is another independent Democrat strongly oppose to Kelly on a number of issues.
He does not favor the tax freeze as the correct way to deal with the property tax problem, thinks the only "new quality" in government (Kelly's trademark) has been shown in neighboring counties and believes county success in improving police-community relations has been minimal.
"If the energy expended in defending and applauding county efforts were spent trying to learn and understand the needs, we would have taken a giant step forward," Wrightson said.