Lanny J. Davis's attack on Neal Potter {Close To Home, Aug. 5} showed why the citizens of Montgomery County need Potter as their county executive. Sidney Kramer, whose campaign Davis runs, has had four years to bring growth under control and relieve homeowners of an increasing tax burden. And he has failed.

To dispose quickly of Davis's arguments: Kramer can't claim credit for the present moratorium on 50 percent of the county's land; that's the result of the adequate public facilities ordinance the council enacted 17 years ago.

Further, the records show that during the past four years Potter had voted against all major deviations from existing master plans, while Kramer has worked to expand commercial development at the expense of housing. When Potter has approved master plan changes, it has been to down-zone commercial development.

Davis's claim that developers are taxed in Montgomery County also is misleading. Potter has tried twice to institute a modest countywide tax on development that would require developers to pay a fair share of the road and school costs their developments create. Each time Kramer has opposed it. The "impact tax" that Davis cited covers only two areas and has raised only $10 million in four years -- in light of our $1.5 billion operating budget, that's a pitiful sum. The other monies put up by developers were voluntary contributions to road costs (but not to schools, fire stations or libraries) to allow their projects to move to the head of the pack under the adequate public facilities ordinance.

Kramer has not restrained development. Rather his policies have stimulated it. During the past four years, he and his council bloc have used property tax money to subsidize the biggest explosion of office space construction ever seen in our county.

And they're not through yet. In Silver Spring, Kramer recommended that traffic-control standards be lowered, which allowed developer Lloyd Moore to qualify for construction of a major mall. Now he is backing a massive new development in Shady Grove that, if built as planned, will be twice the size of downtown Bethesda and incur nearly half a billion dollars in road and school costs.

Meanwhile, Kramer has fought all attempts to cut the budget of his counterproductive $2.25 million office of economic development, which has created 100,000 more jobs than we have workers to fill them and clogged our roads with commuter traffic.

Finally, Davis's claim that Kramer has a useful influence over Gov. William Donald Schaefer can easily be assessed by observing that for every dollar we send the state, we get back 40 cents while Baltimore gets back $1.81.

The sad fact is that Sid Kramer has mortgaged our future and saddled our homeowners and small business owners with high taxes and inflated assessments to accommodate developers and speculators.

If the downturn now predicted by some actually comes, we will need a level-headed and responsible county executive like Potter instead of someone whose divided loyalties made it impossible for him to manage the county's affairs in more prosperous times.

Dickran Y. Hovsepian is chairman of Neal Potter's campaign for county executive.