Term: 4 Years
QUESTION: How would you balance statewide interests with the specific needs of your constituents?
Leo E. Green (Democrat)
R. Nicholas Palarino (Republican)
Leo E. Green (D)
3123 Belair Dr., Bowie
Self-employed lawyer; member of Maryland State Senate for eight years; member, Senate Finance Committee, and chairman, Joint Committee on Management of Public Funds and Joint Oversight Committee on Health Care Cost Containment; member, Maryland House of Delegates, four years; former mayor of Bowie, four years; honorary life member, Maryland Municipal League (the first legislator and fifth person so honored in 53 years); trustee, Prince George's County United Way; director, Boy Scouts, Patuxent District; graduate of Mount St. Mary's College and Georgetown University Law Center; received distinguished alumni award from Mount St. Mary's College in 1979 and Legacy of Excellence Award from Bowie State University; trustee, Maryland's State Universities and Colleges; member, Greenbelt American Legion.
A: I appreciate and have strived to accomplish this essential public policy goal. I have worked hard to ensure that my constituents' voices are heard and problems resolved, and equitable parity obtained in projects, funds and revenues. I also recognize the importance of serving all Maryland citizens and responding to their overall needs. I have therefore sought effective solutions to Maryland's common problems and to assure that government is on our side and responds to the human needs of all the people. Maryland citizens realize those issues that affect everyone statewide, including a responsive and accountable educational system, the preservation and improvement of our environment and quality of life, appropriate ethics standards for public officials at all levels of government, effective anti-crime and rehabilitation measures and matters involving development and transportation. I have fought to address these issues and will continue to do so for all Maryland citizens.
R. Nicholas Palarino (R)
3407 Memphis Lane, Bowie
Consultant on national security matters, Pacific-Sierra Research Corp., 1988-90; served in Army, 1966-88; deputy special adviser to the president and the secretary of state on arms control, 1986-88; Army helicopter pilot in Vietnam, 1969-70, awarded Distinguished Flying Cross and Bronze Star; president, Prince George's County Men's Republican Club, 1990; member, St. Pius X Church and PTA, 1982-90; married, with two children who graduated from Prince George's County schools.
A: It's not difficult to balance statewide interests with those of voters in Legislative District 23. Interests of the state and of District 23 are basically the same. Conflict arises when elected officials become unresponsive to the needs of the voters; two specific examples are taxes and education. Our state has gone from a $440 million surplus to a $150 million budget deficit in just four years. This $600 million spending spree represents a threat not only to the state but to the taxpayers in District 23. Another issue where statewide interest and those of constituents coincide is education. But here again we see a difference between what the voter wants and what he gets. Maryland spends more per student than 42 other states. Yet the schools in District 23 are chronically overcrowded and understaffed. These examples illustrate the need for change. I would work with government officials at all levels to ensure that when statewide interests are balanced against specific needs of the voters, voters in District 23 get their fair share.