QUESTION: What is the most important issue facing the county, and how would you deal with it?
(1 seat) Judith C. Toth Vickie York Judith C. Toth 16905 Route 118, Germantown Age: 52
Legislator/delegate, Maryland House of Delegates, 1975-present; Environmental Matters Committee; Governor's Ethnic Heritage Commission; Governor's Task Force on Establishing a Chesapeake Ferry; past board member, Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments, Maryland Hispanic Commission, Maryland Historic Trust; Joint Committee on Drug and Alcohol Abuse; Joint Committee on Medicaid Reform; Commission on Hospital Regulations; Commission on Maryland Code Revision; past president, Montgomery County Civic Federation, Metropolitan Washington Congress of Citizens; Potomac River Advisory Committee.
A. Rapid growth and inability to provide adequate public services; effect of this growth on the property tax; influence of those promoting this growth on campaign financing and ethics; the social ills which we have been unable to pursue because of the drain on our resources; the lack of affordable housing because of over-construction of expensive houses and office buildings; all the other direct and indirect problems from traffic congestion and crowded schools to a solid waste crisis. Need to slow growth until we catch up with roads, schools and police/fire protection. Need to find new sources of revenue to take away dependence (42 percent) on property tax, tougher campaign contribution laws, full dislosure of contributions by council members when voting on land use decisions, better drug use prevention and treatment programs, aggressive recycling program with county subsidies, quality day care. Vickie York 1328 Carlsbad Dr., Gaithersburg Age: 34
Realtor/community sales manager, Lewis and Silverman; commissioner, Montgomery County Housing Opportunities Commission, 1987-present; Up-County Citizens Adviory Board, vice chairman, 1985, and chairman, 1986; chairman, Committee for the Up-County; Gaithersburg Landlord Tenant Commission, 1985-90; volunteer, St. Martin's Soup Kitchen, 1985-88; co-chairman, Math and Science Technology Education Resource Committee to obtain a math-science program; volunteer, Elderly Shopper's Program; Democratic precinct official.
A. The most important issue facing Montgomery County is preserving the special characteristics that have always attracted people to our community in the first place: safe, comfortable neighborhoods with first-rate schools, transportation and other services; beautiful parks and recreation areas; and a government that stays close to the pulse of the community. In other words, the quality of life. We can accomplish this by better planning and coordination to ensure that growth and development has the infrastructure to support it; that it is concentrated along mass transit lines; and that it is managed in a way that best meets the needs of a diverse population. We must also take steps to increase affordable housing so that young and old families can still afford to enjoy and contribute to our community.
(1 seat) Nancy Dacek Bruce A. Goldensohn Nancy H. Dacek 9913 Conestoga Way, Potomac Age: 56
Former president, Montgomery County Council of PTAs; chairman and member, Western Area Recreation Advisory Board, 1985-89; member, countywide Recreation Advisory Board, 1987-89; member, Charter Review Commission, 1986; 1989 Citizen of the Year, Potomac Chamber of Commerce; member, Montgomery Community Television board of directors, 1985-89; executive board member, Montgomery County Civic Federation; president, Churchill High School PTSA; founding member, Potomac Community Center Board; member, superintendent's committees on discipline and teacher evaluation; BA, Wellesley College; MA, Case Western Reserve University; married; five children graduated from Montgomery County public schools.
A. Managing growth is the most important issue facing the county. Twenty years of one-party, special-interest government has brought high taxes, traffic congestion, overcrowded schools, inadequate police protection, a threatened environment and a bloated, inefficient government. I will seek alternatives to the county's excessive reliance on property taxes and aggressively pursue our fair share of funds from the state. I will review the budget to make cuts where possible and redirect funds from the bureaucracy to citizen services. I will balance the needs of citizens with the legitimate interests of developers. We must have a comprehensive review of our growth-management system. We need a picture of what we want Montgomery County to be in the future. I will work for our schools and children because as a past president of the Montgomery County Council of PTAs, I know that quality education is the investment with the greatest return. Bruce A. Goldensohn 11504 Golden Post Lane, Gaithersburg Age: 47
Acceptance test engineer, TRW Inc.; vice president, Montgomery County Board of Education; mayor, City of Gaithersburg, 1978-86; council member, City of Gaithersburg, 1976-78; planning commissioner, City of Gaithersburg, 1972-76; board of directors, Transportation Planning Board, Public Safety Committee, Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments, 1978-86; board of directors, Maryland Muncipal League, 1985-86; BA, Queens College, New York City; graduate studies, University of Maryland.
A. The county has lost the balance between provision of public facilities and services and private development. It's time to put our house in order. Since money is scarce, we must economize our current operations. Consolidate offices and functions, streamline bureaucracy and eliminate parts of it, and we will make a major impact. The issue is here because state and federal funds are dissappearing; the county did not keep up its share of development. They didn't slow down the private sector -- therefore the imbalance. We can regain some of the balance with honest cooperation with private and public interests. The sharing of infrastructure costs, cooperative day-care efforts and facilitating production of affordable housing are all possibilities. Revenue may have to be increased through user fees, local taxes, or revised income tax levels. Money is critical, but it's unforgivable that we haven't solved the hard problems -- landfills in Laytonsville, undersized or non-existent libraries, narrow roads, or overcrowded schools. New leadership through two-party government is a major part of the answer. (A few good Republicans will make for better Democrats).