QUESTION: What is the most important issue facing the county, and how would you deal with it?



(1 seat) Michael L. Gudis Marilyn J. Praisner Michael L. Gudis 14809 Old Columbia Pike, Burtonsville Age: 54 Incumbent

Council member, 1978-present; council chairman, 1985, 1989; founder, D.C. Area Sensitivity Awareness Day program and related model civil legislation (recognition by National Association of Counties); introduced legislation for county mammogram programs and settlement expense loan program; vice president and chairman, Maryland Association of Counties Tax Committee; board of directors, Jewish Council for the Aging; BA, accounting, George Washington University; 30 years of experience in finance and taxation; 20 years of involvement in child-care issues; served on health and human services, transportation and environment committees.

A. Balancing growth and reducing traffic congestion are interrelated issues which have to be addressed. The annual growth policy placed 50 percent of the county in moratorium. Adequate public facilities for citizens already living here must be our first priority. We cannot afford to permit new development before roads, schools, police stations and libraries are built. Funding is scarce and we must use our limited resources to provide first-class education for our children. Quality education is extremely important and we must continue to devote half the budget to educational needs. I am proposing a district tax on developers which will generate additional funding for each planning area. These revenues will provide funds necessary to build the facilities for the citizens who already live here. We must have carefully managed growth, synchronized with the availability of adequate facilities to maintain the quality of life in our communities. Marilyn J. Praisner 2620 Shanandale Dr., Silver Spring Age: 48

Two-term Board of Education member and president, 1983-84, 1986-87; leadership in civic affairs: officer or board of directors, Calverton Citizens Association; Suburban Maryland Fair Housing; Greater Laurel-Beltsville Hospital; District 14A Democratic Club; County Council of PTAs; member, Montgomery County Drug Abuse Advisory Council; past president, Maryland Association of Boards of Education; 23-year resident of District 4; married, three grown children; resigned 15-year position with federal government to run for council.

A. Montgomery County is at a crossroads. Inadequate council leadership has led to excessive growth, clogged roads, crowded schools and increased pressures for government services. There is a lack of long-range, comprehensive planning and an unwillingness to resolve fiscal issues except in a crisis mode at a time when our population is becoming more diverse and state and federal funds are reduced or jeopardized (Linowes Commission). To restore our commitment to balanced, responsible growth and demonstrate more than lip service to a strong annual growth policy, we must avoid special-interest legislation, respect master plans in zoning decisions. Fiscal issues must be tackled from both revenue and expenditure sides to ensure equal attention to community needs and fiscal stability. I support a development tax, a more progressive state income tax, local options for vehicle fees, spending affordability limits and, most important, a comprehensive audit of services to streamline government, reduce duplication.



(1 seat) Robert L. Clark Jr. Carol F. Wallace Robert L. Clark Jr. 14531 Layhill Rd., Silver Spring Age: 29

Republican party leader/businessman; state central committee, 1986 to present; past president, Young Republicans; regional chairman, Regan/Bush; director, Bush/Quayle field services; chairman of major party fund-raisers; named "outstanding republican of the year" by Maryland Republican Party, 1986; board of directors and treasurer, Wheaton Boys and Girls Club; member, local civic association; deacon/board member, Faith Church, Silver Spring; business owner for more than 10 years.

A. Mismanagement of the county by the current council. Problems that faced Montgomery County four years ago have not been solved but are only getting worse. Issues such as education, public safety, drugs and crime, landfills, traffic, growth and high property taxes must be seriously addressed in the next four years. The current council has never seen a program it didn't like, and has never come across a tax it didn't hike. Their answer to our problems is to "tax first and ask questions later." It's time for a change! The first step we must take toward solving our problems is to elect a new County Council. We must elect people that listen, care and are responsive to our needs. That is the kind of council member I will be. Carol F. Wallace 913 Winhall Way, Silver Spring Age: 54

Self-employed educational consultant; member, Montgomery County Board of Education, 1978-82, and president, 1980-81; Montgomery County Taxpayers League, 1984-90, and chairman, 1987-90; U.S. Navy League, Central Maryland Council, Sea Cadet Corp. chairman, 1987 to present; elementary and special education teacher in New York, Florida and Montgomery County, 10 years; bachelor of science, Wagner Lutheran College; graduate work, Brooklyn Law School, Newark State Teachers College, University of Tampa, University of Florida; life member, Hadassah; member, American Business Women's Association, Burtonsville Kiwanis, Montgomery County Republican Club, Olney Women's Republican Club; county resident for 26 years; married; two sons; one grandson.

A. The continuing decline in our quality of life is due to the inability of elected officials to prioritize needs, including the taxpayers' ability to pay. Our present one-party government has bred machine politics and many arrogant, unresponsive politicians. My priorities are to: demand accountability; eliminate government waste, duplication and inefficiency; get fair share of state money; adhere to master plans; provide necessary roads, schools and parking lots; propose a graduated value-added tax on new housing costing more than $120,000; hire additional police and firefighters, upgrade equipment; explore use of economical pre-fab modular cells for new prison; provide more affordable moderately priced housing; provide adequate funds for quality schools; support smaller/weighted class sizes; build light/mono rail in routes 29 and 270 corridors and east-west north of the beltway; build Route 28-198 connector -- not ICC; improve recycling efforts; improve/coordinate licensing procedures and inspections of day-care providers.