Term: 4 years
QUESTION: How would you balance statewide interests with the specific needs of your constituents? DISTRICT 30 (3 seats) Aris T. Allen (R) 1323 Magnolia Ave., Annapolis Age: 79
Physician; served eight years, Maryland House of Delegates; served three years, Maryland Senate; served six years, Anne Arundel County Board of Education; served eight years, medical adviser, federal government; candidate for lieutenant governor of Maryland, 1978; medical practice in the District for 40 years; holds MD and BA degrees; member: Cancer Society board, YMCA board, Nocal Bank board, Multiple Sclerosis board.
A. I find this question quite broad and vague. In order to respond in a meaningful manner, specific interests of the state must be balanced against specific needs of my constituents. John C. Astle (D) 51 Fleet St., Annapolis Age: 47 Incumbent
Member, House of Delegates, 1983-present; chairman, Anne Arundel County delegation for five years; member, Appropriations Committee; vice chairman, budget subcommittee; member, Joint Committee on Legislative Ethics; co-chairman, Joint Committee on Medevac, which restructured Maryland's helicopter Medevac program; served in Marine Corps, 1966-75; received 31 air medals, two Purple Hearts, meritorious service medal, presidential service badge; colonel, Marine Corps Reserves; active in the Marine Corps Reserve Officers Association, American Legion, VFW and DAV; bachelor's degree, Marshall University, 1966; graduate studies, Catholic University; married, two children.
A. Most of the issues we deal with in the General Assembly are statewide in scope. As the chairman of the Anne Arundel County delegation, I work with the other Anne Arundel County delegates on the issues which are local in scope but which require General Assembly approval. The budget deficit is an issue that really affects local and state interests the same. The decisions I make as a member of the House Appropriations Committee in dealing with the state budget will affect my own constituency in District 30 just as much as people in other districts throughout the state. In my next term, I plan to continue my work as an open, responsive legislator. I know that in the next term, issues involving the environment, such as recycling, will become extremely important, not only for our own county but for other jurisdictions across the state. Phillip Bissett (R) 453 Walnut Dr., Edgewater Age: 34
Warehouseman, Giant Food Inc.; member, Anne Arundel County Republican Central Committee; first vice president, Mayo Civic Association; member, South County Environmental Commission; Anne Arundel County Young Republican; member, Southern District Police Community Relations Council; member, Anne Arundel Taxpayers for Responsive Government; member, Severn River Association; past assistant treasurer, Mayo Civic Association; campaign staff, Bob Neall for Congress, 1986; volunteer, Marjorie Holt for Congress, 1982, 1984; volunteer, Reagan-Bush presidential campaign, 1980, 1984; member, Loch Haven Civic Association.
A. Balancing statewide and constituents' interests should present more of a challenge for candidates representing less diverse districts than mine. District 30 includes rural areas with agricultural interests, and the city of Annapolis, which faces the same problems as other urban areas. Other areas are suburban, and voters there, like many in Maryland, are concerned about growth, overdevelopment and transportation. Despite its diversity, several concerns stand out as I wage my grass-roots campaign throughout District 30. First, Marylanders pay practically the highest taxes in America and yet the average family sees little improvement in state services or programs. Second, they are concerned about drugs, crime and a judicial system that places a criminal's rights ahead of those of the victim. Third, they are concerned about the need to protect our environment. These concerns are undoubtedly priorities with all Marylanders. Therefore, I see little difficulty in balancing the interests of my constituents and the state. Michael E. Busch (D) 951 Windwhisper Lane, Annapolis Age: 43 Incumbent
Administrator for youth athletics, Anne Arundel County Department of Recreation and Parks, 1979-present; member, House of Delegates, 1987-present; member, House Judiciary Committee; chairman, State Commission on Physical Fitness; member, Maryland Commission for Women; worked with Joint Legislative Committee on Program Open Space; Legislator of the Year, Anne Arundel County Nurses Association, 1989; Legislator of the Year, Maryland Psychologists Association, 1990; graduate, St. Mary's High School, Annapolis; bachelor's degree, Temple University, 1970; single; teacher and coach, St. Mary's High School, 1973-79, Football Coach of the Year, 1978.
A: As a delegate, I always consider the constituents I represent. I feel that in being elected to this office, I have been entrusted by my constituents with the responsibility to act in their best interests. For the majority of the issues in the General Assembly, the impacts will be felt by all constituents equally. However, there are times when issues become parochial. It then becomes my duty to represent what I believe is in the best interests of my constituents. An excellent example of this balance is with the proposed Eastern Bypass. This highway system is projected to increase traffic flow through Anne Arundel County. As a delegation, Anne Arundel County stood in opposition to this project because of strong constituent concerns regarding environmental impacts, expedient growth and the intrusion on the quality of life of Anne Arundel County residents. Other legislators, however, see the bypass as something needed to help growth, relieve congestion and provide a direct route to the Port of Baltimore. Edith Segree (D) 755 Holly Lane, Arnold Age: 49
Legislative assistant to Anne Arundel County Council member Carole Baker, 1982-90; board member, Anne Arundel County Alcohol & Drug Advisory Council; Anne Arundel County Community Action Agency; Board of Education Guidance Advisory Council; Lower Broadneck Federation; Citizens Advisory Council of Broadneck High School; past officer, Greater Arnold Recreation Council, Parent Teacher Association; Troop Service Director for Girl Scouts; delegate, School Board Nominating Convention; BA, Bucknell University; married with four children; substitute teacher, 1976-82; State Department of Legislative Research, 1980; U.S. Census, 1970 and 1980; Social Security, 1962-65.
A: My first consideration would be the needs and concerns of the residents of District 30. At the same time, I believe my constituents would expect me to act responsibly with regard to issues affecting the entire state. We do not live in a vacuum. We must consider the concerns and needs of other jurisdictions because, invariably, we will be affected. Two examples come to mind. The health of the Chesapeake Bay should be as important to those living in western Maryland as to those living in Anne Arundel -- our natural resources must be protected. Another example is substance abuse. This is no longer just an urban problem. It has spilled over to even the most rural counties. We all have to be concerned and work for solutions not just in our district, but statewide.