2010 Elections Again ~ Annapolis Capital Punishment

Monday, June 21, 2010

2010 Elections Again

More environmental endorsements....The new local Maryland League of Conservation Voters Anne Arundel Chapter announced its very first endorsements for County Council at the Chesapeake Green Living Festival. The LCV believes these candidates will place a priority on environment and quality of life issues and stand up for clean water and work to make our home a better place for our children and grandchildren. They are endorsing:
Jamie Benoit, Democrat, Incumbent District 4    Jamie has been a County Council leader on environmental issues and sponsored a bill to provide funds to restore streams and mitigate pollution from stormwater that failed by only one vote.

Maureen Carr York, Republican Challenger for open seat District 5  Maureen has supported environmental issues in her leadership role with the Greater Park Severna Council and as a member of the Board of Education.

Chris Trumbauer, Democrat Challenger District 6  Chris has been a champion of clean water and conservation as the West-Rhode Riverkeeper and Executive Director and as a long time Board member of the South River Federation.

I am not suprised regarding Trumbauer and predicted that they would chose him over fellow Democrat and incumbent Chuck Ferrar. Certainly Benoit was a sure bet but York is not as well known. I am pleased that her party affiliation apparently did not make a difference.
Visit here to learn more http://www.mdlcv.org/county-chapters/

Continue reading if you wish to know the long and complex list of questions they asked of the candidates:


Primary Issues:

A.) Name the three most pressing environmental issues facing Anne Arundel County today and, briefly, describe how you would respond to them if elected/re-elected.

B. ) Name the three most significant county environmental issues you’ve addressed, either as a private citizen or as an officeholder.
Smart Growth and Land Use:

Uncontrolled growth has been a major cause of environmental degradation in past years. Recognizing this, the General Development Plan (GDP) approved by the County Council in 2009 has specific environmental goals that need to be implemented. This plan also proposes limiting increases in residential and commercial density to north and west county around transportation hubs and in response to BRAC. Accordingly:

1. Do you believe that the county has taken sufficient action over the past four years to manage growth? Do you agree to support re-zoning only when it is compatible with the approved General Development Plan?

2. If elected, would you support implementation by the county of a program for transferable development rights? I.e., providing financial incentives for land owners in greenway and farmland preservation areas to give up development rights that can be transferred to targeted growth areas?

3. If elected, what would you do to increase resources available to preserve forests and farmland from development? What would be your priorities for preserving specific parcels of forests and farmland?

4. Would you oppose any proposed zoning changes that have not been reviewed and reported on by the Department of Planning and Zoning in accordance with the established process for insuring compatibility with the GDP?

5. What steps would you take to implement the recommendations of the Small Area Plans?

6. What measures would you support to mitigate the impact of development in West County?

• establishing a regional park in West County?
• insuring resources to improve pubic transportation?
• building a public elementary school?
• ongoing protection of areas of significant natural resource value, such as nontidal wetlands, stream buffers and large, contiguous forested areas, even if areas designated are priority growth areas?

Waterway Pollution Prevention:

All rivers and watersheds in Anne Arundel County are designated as impaired under the Clean Water Act due to excess nutrients, sediments and other pollutants such as bacteria. Anne Arundel County has legal responsibility for limiting the pollution that flows into our streams from stormwater, septic systems and sewage treatment plants. The cost of implementing stream repairs and pollution controls for county streams has been estimated to be between $750,000,000 and one billion dollars. Accordingly:
7. What measures would you take to insure that the County meets its legal responsibility to stem the pollution entering rivers and streams? Given the county’s revenue structure, how will you address these needs?

8. Would you support establishment of a new storm water utility fee to finance measures to mitigate storm water runoff damage from existing development?

9. Would you consider regulation or a tax on nutrient-rich lawn fertilizers to reduce their impact of our streams and rivers?

10. Would you support requiring the regular inspection of septic systems to insure that they are functioning well, thus minimizing bacterial contamination of our waterways?

Standing in Court for Citizen Groups:

11. Would you support changes to county law to expand the “standing” of citizens and groups of citizens to appear before administrative Hearing Officers and the Board of Appeals in all matters involving land use?

Good Government:

12. The Board of Appeals makes decisions on variances and other matters that directly affect the environment. Currently Board members are appointed by the County Council with each Council member appointing one Board member. Would you support reforming the process for appointment of members of the Board of Appeals to insure members with high qualifications? If so, what would you propose?

13. What steps would you take to promote better coordination of the actions of the County and the City of Annapolis regarding proposed development, annexation, transportation and the provision of public facilities?

Enforcement of Laws Impacting the Environment:

14. Because of a lack of funding and staffing, the county can only monitor and inspect a small percentage of the sediment and erosion control permit holders. Would you support increasing permit fees to provide the necessary funds and resources for the county to enforce current environmental laws?

15. Penalties and fines for violating environmental laws, including critical area violations, are so low that they have proven to be an inadequate deterrent. Would you support strengthening these penalties? What other measures would you initiate to strengthen enforcement of environmental laws?


16. If elected, what initiatives, if any, would you support to provide convenient, affordable public transit and safe bicycle and pedestrian pathways?

Additional Comments?

Look here for frequent updates to all the 2010 election campaigns with 2010 Elections Again! LISTEN TO CP Publisher Paul Foer on 1430WNAV at 8:15 every weekday morning or click on the WNAV icon to the right, press On demand and On The Foerfront to listen. READ CP Publisher Paul Foer's "The Ninth Ward" every Wednesday in The Capital at www.capitalonline.com Identified comments are always welcome. ALL ANONYMOUS COMMENTS will be automatically rejected without being opened.


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