Candidates for state Senate and House of Delegates were asked the following questions by The Washington Post:
Industry: What plans do you have to attract new industry to the state and to help those now unemployed?
Reaganomics: What parts of the Reagan economic program do you support or oppose?
Mary H. Boergers (D), (incumbent), 36, of 4417 Puller Dr., Kensington, is a former teacher who was appointed to a vacancy in the House of Delegates in July 1981. She was legislative coordinator for the National Organization of Women, and history in Rockville High School for siz years.
Industry: Although unemployment is currently at a record high and the nation has been in a recession for over a year, Maryland has been successful in creating new jobs by attracting new businesses to the state. I support continuation of the Maryland Department of Community and Economic Development's effective efforts to recruit business through extensive promotional activities. Maintaining a high quality of life and development of an adequate road and mass transit system are also essential. Adequate funding of the Industrial and Commercial Redevelopment Loan Program as well as tax incentives to businesses locating in enterprise zones are additional methods of helping establish new businesses in Maryland. The unemployed are helped most through efforts to revitalize the economy. Effective job training programs, placement efforts such as the Maryland Employment Service, and extended unemployment benefits are all necessary elements of a comprehensive program for unemployed workers.
Reaganomics: I support some of the ideas espoused by President Reagan including establishment of cost-effective programs and reduction of government regulation. I also support the concept of block grants because it gives states more flexibility and control over programs. However, I oppose the methods used to cut government expenditures and believe block grants can never work effectively without adequate funding. An analysis of Reagan budget cuts shows that the safety net for the poor and elderly has been removed. Yet the president has failed miserably in his efforts to balance the budget because of excessive corporate tax cuts and massive increases in defense spending. An example of Reagan's penny-wise and pound-foolish policies is the decrease in funds for day-care programs. These cuts make it impossible for AFDC mothers to work and thus significantly lessens the number of people able to leave the welfare rolls.
Crime: In order to ensure swift apprehension and punishment of criminals I support continued state police aid to local jurisdictions. This money helps to improve the training and increase the number of police officers in the state. We need to have the most effective prosecutors and the best judges as well as a modernized, efficient court system. Expanded prison facilities are also necessary to make sure there is space to house hardened criminals. More citizen involvement in crime prevention programs such as Neighborhood Watch and Operation Identification as well as improved community relations betw-en police and citizens are additional methods of addressing the crime problem. Restitution programs and increased concern for the rights of victims are necessary. We must review our juvenile justice system and parole and probation system in order to lessen the number of repeat offenders.
Gloria C. Fernandez (D), 49, of 700 Grandin Ave., Rockville, is a teacher of children with special needs. She has been active in issues affecting children and education, and serves on the boards of several educational organizations. She also is active in groups working on behalf of Hispanic people.
Industry: International industry must be brought into the state by reviewing needs and assessments of these industries and adjusting tax and zoning laws to make it a real opportunity for them. In addition, contracts can be made as to the employment of Maryland citizens in these industries. Our unemployed need retraining, education and options. In addition, we must stop the large number of small business failures by offering legislative support and dollars.
Reaganomics: I cannot support an economic program which cuts dollars from the programs that aid human lives and increases dollars for arms and nuclear weapons. An economic program that reduces the health, housing, education and employment services can only lead to increased crime, increased substance abuse, increased unemployment and increased dissatisfaction with nonresponsive government.
Crime: I would support review of the judicial system. There should be equal and fair sentencing; mandatory sentencing and revision of the process of repeat offenders. Parole boards and sentencing judges must make great disclosures of the evidence upon which decisions are made. One cannot view crime without reviewing economic conditions and the desperation of our citizens. Incarceration should be a time for training or retraining as well as a protection of the public.
Jennie M. Forehand (D), (Incumbent) 46, of 712 Smallwood Rd., Rockville, was elected to the House in 1978. She is a former teacher, juvenile probation counselor, and small-business owner. She is a consumer advocate, specializing in senior citizens' problems, and active in mental health work.
Industry: Maryland has been successful recently in improving our business climate. The Department of Economic and Community Development's efforts in the Silicon Valley of California and in Japan and Europe have stimulated interest with several prospects for expanded business for Maryland. Greater partnership between business and government helps cut red tape. Individual counties should improve procedures to expedite permits and licenses. New enterprise zones should be supported, and tax incentives sued selectively. Annual reviews should assure that state regulations are not discouraging business and industry from coming to Maryland. Retraining programs, at all levels, must be expanded with particular emphasis on gaps where jobs are available. Funded on-the-job training programs for necessary work projects would increase training and create employment. We must use more innovation in improving the skilled-labor pool for our area. More day-care programs.
Reaganomics: Maryland's General Assembly has for several years initiated policies which required legislators and state agencies to make certain each program was efficient, cost-effective, humane and fair. Reagan's block grants were supposed to reduce federal intrusion and bring decision-making closer to the people. However, many regulations remain, and many important programs cannot be continued. Some Reagan short-term cuts may compound long-term problems. Preventive programs have been slashed. We see funds for childhood immunizations diminished while funds for immunizing pets of military personnel are increased. Short-sighted dismantling of social programs has injured women, families, minorities, disadvantaged, senior citizens and especially small children. While small businesses and average taxpayers are hurting, certain industries still enjoy their tax loopholes at our expense, and at a cost of billions. Strong national defense is critically important, but little attention is paid to cutting waste there.
Crime: 1) Stiffer penalties for crimes of violence and for repeat offenders. 2) Prevention: Expand "Community Watch" and "Scared Straight" programs. Retain rehabilitative programs for alcohol, drug abusers. 3) Greater attention to parole and probation system to reduce repeat offenders, to facilitate rehabilitation, and to protect the innocent. 4) The new 720-bed prison in Hagerstown should be completed and staffed as soon as possible with no delays. 5) Rehabilitation programs that have proven effective (such as Montgomery County's) should be continued. 6) Greater and more effective ways should be found to help the victims of crime. 7) Increased "alternative community service" should be utilized as often as possible.
Michael R. Gordon (D), 35, of 205 Upton Street, Rockville, is an attorney and lifelong Montgomery County resident. He was a legislative aide in the state Senate and a special assistant to Secretary of State Blair Lee III. A former Army Reserve officer, he has held office in many legal, civic and Democratic party organizations.
Industry: I believe we can attract new industry to the area and provide the much-needed jobs here by taking advantage of the geographic proximity of Montgomery County to the nation's capitol. We need to promptly improve our transportation network of roads, the completion of Metro and the implementation of an extensive ride-on bus system so that employes of new businesses will be able to get to and from the work places in shorter periods of time. I believe the state should use fiscal incentives to attract new business. It should develop programs for affordable housing and improve its school system so businesses who do relocate here will have their employes live near where they work.
Reaganomics: I support bringing the decision-making process closer to the people by switching it to the state government. I feel that the state can be more responsive to the particular needs of our community and develop cost- effective programs to meet economic and social goals. I disagree with the Reagan administration's plans to allow the states to do this with much less resources, especially in the areas of programs to provide the job retrining, health care for the elderly and other social support programs. An example of this insensitivity is the proposed idea to lump vocational aid in with adult education in aid grants. This shows a lack of sensitivity on the part of the Reagan administration to the diverse needs of these two programs. They should be completely separated.
Crime: I believe we should make the criminal justice system more effective by giving the courts the needed tools to punish criminals effectively. Because of the present lack of bed space, potentially dangerous criminals are out on the street without supervision. The system should place more emphasis on deterrents and at the same time not lose sight of the need to rehabilitate those offenders who can be saved. I further believe that the criminal justice system should be expanded to meet the incrased population of the state. Also, where appropriate, increased penalties for various crimes should be legislated.
Peter R. Hartogensis (D), 38, of 36 Orchard Way South, Rockville, practives law in Rockville and serves on the Rockville Board of Appeals and as chairman of the Montgomery County Bar Association's Judicial Selection Committee. He is a former Army Reservist and active in civic and party precinct activities.
Industry: The state should work to improve the infrastructure roads, bridges, public transit, water, and sewer service to be attractive to new business. Tax policy should make the state attractive to new business through tax breaks to them. Maryland should actively recruit new businesses, at home and abroad, by emphasizing its port facilities and proximity to major markets.
Reaganomics: The Reagan economic programs have been most damaging in eliminating programs designed to help people get out of the welfare system, such as job training, CETA and child care. The system further has disincentives for people to take jobs and get out of the welfare system. Although I support eliminating waste, red tape and needless programs, the budget cuts have lacked precision and eliminated too many worthy programs. The extreme budget imbalance is the lead cause of persisting high interest rates and continuing recession.
Crime: I see a major cause of the crime problem in Maryland to be lack of prison facilities. Because our prisons are jammed, judges are not able to incarcerate many who need and deserve it; furthermore prisons become unhealthy warehouses for offenders where rehabilitative efforts are impossible. I thoroughly support completion of the prison building system.
Robert Anthony Jacques (D), 44, of 14 South Adams St., Rockville, has practiced law in Rockville since 1963. He was elected to the House of Delegates in 1974, and served until 1979. He has served on the Maryland Commission for Women and the Montgomery County Property Tax Assessment Appeals Board.
Industry: A more realistic state income tax structure requiring all Maryland residents to pay Maryland tax would raise millions in additional funds. A retraining program along lines of West Germany for the employable worker.
Reaganomics: Oppose cuts in Head Start, Lunch programs, student aid. Support cuts in CETA and food stamps.
Crime: 1) More prisons to contain the inmates who deserve incarceration. 2) A better-staffed parole and probation system. 3) More education and rehabilitation programs for inmates who are qualified.