Term: 4 Years
QUESTION: How would you balance statewide interests with the specific needs of your constituents?
Michael J. Baker (Republican)
Gene W. Counihan (Democrat)
Rosemary Glynn (Democrat)
Richard LaVay (Republican)
Sally McGarry (Democrat)
Jean W. Roesser (Republican)
Michael J. Baker (R)
24449 Cutsail Dr., Damascus
Insurance claims adjuster, senior casualty claims representative, Allstate Insurance; founding officer, former president and chairman of the board, Germantown Jaycees; Top 10 Maryland Jaycees; board member of the year, Germantown Jaycees; loaned executive, United Way Campaign; chairman, Montgomery County Insurance Safety Committee; member, Germantown Chamber of Commerce; precinct chairman; BS, political science, Texas A&M University; Outstanding Student Senator; General Moore Outstanding Leadership Award; member, Neelsville Presbyterian Church; married. .
A. The balance between statewide interests and the needs of my constituents involves fairness. Is it fair that Montgomery County residents receive less than 40 cents for every tax dollar paid to the state, while Baltimore receives $1.60 for every dollar? On every issue under consideration, I would always ask myself: "Is it fair to my constituents?" I would also balance the needs based on how much we can expect people to pay in order to meet the state interests. Of course, I would emphasize the needs of my constituents. I would, however, make sure that fulfilling these needs is not detrimental to the rest of the state.
Gene W. Counihan (D)
9901 Dellcastle Rd., Gaithersburg
Supervisor of planning, Montgomery County public schools; member, House of Delegates, 1982-present; vice chairman, House Ways and Means Committee, 1986-present; Property Tax Reform Force, 1990; member, Fiscal Affairs Committee, Southern Legislative Conference; Democratic Central Committee, 1978-82; elected director and president, Montgomery Village Foundation, 1977-80; administrator and teacher, Montgomery County schools, 1963-present; associate professor and instructor, part time, University of Maryland, American University, Federal City College, 1967-73; BS, Frostburg State; MS, American University; native of Maryland; married; five daughters.
A. A strong, viable county is an asset to the state. In most situations, there is no conflict between a statewide and a county perspective. There are county needs I would work to see the state address. In recent years, Montgomery County has received more transportation help than any jurisdiction in the state. Interstate 270, Metrobus and Metrorail and a number of other valuable road projects reflect this fact. We also received more school construction funds than any other county. State payments for our teachers' pensions are the highest in Maryland. Obviously, operating assistance based on financial needs goes primarily to areas of high unemployment and low income, standards that, thankfully, we do not meet. I also work to tailor statewide programs to address our special circumstances. The Property Tax Reform Act of 1990, which I helped draft and enact into law, is an example. This legislation established a maximum 10 percent assessment cap in 1991 to protect citizens from excessive tax increases.
Rosemary Glynn (D)
7524 Westlake Ter., Bethesda
Lawyer; prosecutor, U.S. Department of Justice, Brooklyn district attorney's office, 1978-85; as a civic activist, testified in Annapolis and the county on environmental, disabled persons and consumer issues; president, Maryland Condominium and Homeowner Association; member, Democratic Party Central Committee; pro-choice candidate; married and the mother of children who graduated from county public schools.
A. I would take every opportunity to learn of my constituents' concerns. Many constituent needs are shared by others elsewhere in the state. As an effective legislator, I would build coalitions with other parts of the state. For example, problems concerning the quarries in Travilah/Boyds can be addressed by stronger legislation enacted with the support of delegates who have surface mining problems in their counties. When conflicts arise not over a goal, such as protection of the Chesapeake Bay, but in the implementation of the policy to achieve that goal, such as in regulation of agricultural run-off, I would work closely with my constituents to ensure that the regulations are effective, reasonable and not overly bureaucratic. On taxation and fiscal issues, I would work to see that Montgomery County is treated fairly and would resist attempts by the Linowes Commission to reduce teacher pension benefits and to redistribute the local piggy-back revenues.
Richard LaVay (R)
14000 Crossland Lane, Gaithersburg
President, the LaVay Corp.; board member, Stepping Stone Homeless Shelter, Rockville; board member, Montgomery County Men's Republican Club; member, Montgomery County Coalition for the Homeless; active, Jimmie Henga Foundation for Multiple Sclerosis; married, three children; BS, economics, Mt. St. Mary's College, 1975; first prize, Finest in Family Living, Suburban Maryland Homebuilders Association; Montgomery County resident, 30 years; Alexandria Civic Group, Neighborhood Improvement Award; received commercial pilot's license, 1974.
A. The state of Maryland has failed in its responsibility to provide the necessary funding for Montgomery County's road and school construction, forcing the county to use its funds to finance many state obligations. As a result, Montgomery County homeowners have witnessed real estate assessment increases averaging 71 percent, potentially forcing many long-time county residents from their homes. As a delegate, I would support statewide job-creating economic investment when accompanied by specific plans as to how the municipality would solve its problems. The municipality would be accountable for and held to performance standards. An entire state that is economically sound and paying taxes would take the inordinate tax burden off the backs of Montgomery County's taxpayers. Additionally, a clean environment in Montgomery County means a cleaner Chesapeake Bay for the entire state. Balancing the interests of the 15th District citizens with those of all state citizens is not only possible, but is sensible.
Sally McGarry (D)
10340 Democracy Lane, Potomac
Owner-president, Rockville Paperworks, 1983-present; chairman, 1989-90, president, 1986-89, Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay; Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee, 1986-90; alternate, Democratic National Convention, 1988; legislative aide, Del. Gene W. Counihan, 1986-88; vice president, director, lobbyist League of Women Voters, 1972-present; commissioner, Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission, 1979-81; supervisor, Montgomery Soil Conservation Service, 1978-79; BA, political science, Swarthmore College; married with five children, three grandchildren.
A. The needs of my constituents in District 15 would come first. Ours is the largest district in the county, and probably in the state of Maryland, both in geographic area and population. Therefore, the infrastructure needs -- for roads, bridges, rail lines, schools and other public facilities -- are greater than for any other district. The growth in our population, of people who have chosen our district as the best place in which to live, creates demands for new services as well. The state budget must allocate more funds for school construction and rehabilitation statewide. I would work as a delegate to gain greater recognition of the importance of this contribution to all localities by the state and to increase the size of this appropriation. A healthy economy in Montgomery County benefits the entire state of Maryland. It is in the best interest of legislators from all parts of the state to promote it.
Jean W. Roesser (R)
10830 Fox Hunt Lane, Potomac
Elected to the House of Delegates, 1986; member, Constitutional and Administrative Law Committee and Special Committee on Drug and Alcohol Abuse; former newspaper reporter, Suburban Record; member, Appalachian National Scenic Advisory Council, 1983-87; spearheaded establishment of Summer Stage in the Parks for Kids, Montgomery County Parks and Recreation Department; past president, Potomac Women's Republican Club and Montgomery County Federation of Republican Women; past vice president, Maryland Federation of Republican Women; founding member, Montgomery County Arts Council; member, area chambers of commerce and civic associations; former congressional liaison assistant, U.S. Information Agency; BA, Trinity College, Washington, D.C.; graduate work, Catholic University; married; three children.
A. Montgomery County's delegation to the state legislature must resist any efforts by the state to cut the county's share of piggy-back taxes and teachers' retirement funds. The state may have to allocate more funds to Baltimore and less affluent counties, particularly for education. These jurisdictions must account fully for these funds and become more self-sufficient. A highly competitive Port of Baltimore, for example, would yield immense benefits to Baltimore and the entire state. We must work with neighboring counties and statewide to achieve excellence in education at all levels, increase day-care programs for children and elderly citizens, improve transportation, protect the Chesapeake Bay and Maryland's other bountiful environmental resources for our children's future, provide affordable housing near workplaces, help disabled citizens attain more productive lives and assure the rights of victims of crime.