Candidates were asked: 1. In your opinion what are the two major problems or issues facing local elected officials of your county?
2. What is your position on these issue? How would you change existing policies on these issues? (Vote for 5) Robert H. Kittleman, 52, of 3105 West Ivory Rd., West Friendship, has been chairman of the Howard County Republican Central Committee.
1. Howard County Government is growing faster than necessary and the zoning process is hopelessly entangled in red tape and in a maze of legal suits.
2. Stronger fiscal control by the council is needed to provide the balance to restrain the runaway growth of government.Current Republican council candidates could provide that balance. Basic restructuring of the zoning process is needed to make major zoning and zoning rule changes legislative instead of judicial. At present, zoning changes are tied up in the courts for many years which is not fair to any of the parties involved. J. Michael Marshall, 33, of 9744 Basket Ring Rd., Columbia, has been a member of the Harper's Choice and Oakland Mill's village boards and the Columbia Council.
1. Zoning and the expense of government. No two issues effect the residents of Howard County more than these.
2. On zoning, I would institute changes to make major zoning decisions legislative in nature. They are currently handled by a quasi-judicial process which prevents openness and does not allow the voters of Howard County the right to petition major zoning decisions to referendum.
On government spending, I would encourage commercial development in order to provide a broader tax base. I would fund only programs that were proven to be cost effective or which were required by a broad cross section of countians. I would work to establish a cap on the tax rate and propose legislative that would establish a sunset review for Howard County agencies and programs. Charles E. Miller, 75, of Gray Rock Farm, Ellicott City, has been a county commissioner for six years and has served on the Board of Education and the County Council.
1. a) Property taxes that have increased nearly 50 percent since 1974 - from 42 million to more than 60 million. The reason is because our county authorities are inexperienced and never had to manage a business. b) Zoning that has been influenced by special interest groups that the county has been run by the court through litigation at a great expense to the citizens.
2a). The fiscal authorities should have business experience so that they do not have to waste thousands of taxpayers' money for needless consultants and useless employes. b.) Elect county government officials that are not obligated to special interests and can be trusted so that the best interests of the citizens' health, safety and welfare come before anything else.
1. Trent Mitchell did not respond. William H. Morstein, 33, of 3422 Dogwood Dr., Ellicott City, has been an assistant county solicitor in Howard County. He ran for state's attorney in 1974.
1. I believe that the orderly growth of the county while preserving the integrity of our neighborhoods is of major concern in Howard County. I also believe that government must be more responsive to the needs of the people by installing in county employes a sense of leadership which will also result in a more efficient and less expensive method of delivering services to the community.
2. At the present time there is inadequate planning on the part of the administration. I would promote the establishment of a commission to develop an economic model for the entire county. The commission would develop a plan which would be recommended to the council involving numerous programs concerning fragmented but different agencies, such as zoning, taxation, health care facilities, schools, roads, water and sewage. Martin Lee Teal, 28, of 5344-2 Brook Way, Columbia, has been a regional coordinator for Motorists United, an auto consumer lobby group.
1. The primary problem facing Howard Countians over the next four years is to stem the ever increasing property tax burden on citizens. A second issue is the range of problems and injustice faced by renters.
2. Taxes are best kept down by avoiding needless duplication and "triplication" of services and by scrutinizing the excess expenditures in the capital budget. Renters are too often viewed as second class citizens. I propose a "Bill of Rights for Renters."