My vision for Frederick County
(10/2014) My vision for Frederick County is a community where every child has an opportunity for an exceptional education and a seat inside a school building, where citizens can drive across town without long delays on congested roads, and where every citizen feels a
sense of belonging and community. Frederick County can grow while preserving our rural character, our historic and cultural amenities, and our wonderful quality of life. My goal is to ensure Frederick County remains the best place to live, work, and raise a family.
This is my plan for my first 100 days as County Executive.
Managing growth responsibly is fundamental to our future prosperity and to managing our budget. I will propose legislation to the county council to restore a strong, functional Adequate Public Facilities Ordinance to time the pace of residential growth to our ability to provide schools, roads, and public safety. I will put an immediate end to taxpayer
giveaways to residential development. The Young Board has approved giving away over $160 million of future property tax revenue to two residential developers rather than requiring them to pay for and provide the needed infrastructure to support their projects. These dollars should go to education, public safety, road maintenance and other core county services. My priority is to
create a vibrant local economy with good-paying jobs rather than creating a bedroom community for the surrounding metropolitan area. I will achieve this goal by creating a regional job center in Frederick, restoring our investment in our business and technology incubator which has proven to create jobs, and by filling the vacant agriculture economic development position.
My vision for Frederick County includes world-class schools. We know that excellent public schools lift our students, our families, our property values, and will secure our long-term economic prosperity. We have one of the best school systems in the country, but our schools are at risk due to years of funding at the bare minimum required by state law.
Minimal funding by the current administration has resulted in overcrowded classrooms and out of date technology. I will work collaboratively with our Board of Education to develop an outcome based plan for the next four years with a focus on keeping highly qualified teachers in our classrooms and providing up-to-date technology and materials of instruction. By eliminating an
unneeded position, I will add an education liaison to maintain a strong working partnership with all our education partners. Strong schools equal a strong community.
Our future must include plans to take care of our seniors. I will fight to save Citizens and Montevue to keep our promise to our seniors and to save taxpayers money. The privatization of Citizens and Montevue is costing us more and fewer patients are being served. The current budget pays Aurora Holding $7.4 million to operate Citizens and Montevue when the
county could have operated these facilities for $2.9 million. The deal the Young administration cut with Aurora is costing taxpayers over $4.0 million more in the current budget. I will restore the cuts to Meals on Wheels to make sure that no senior goes hungry. I will empower our Commission on Aging and will immediately fill the vacant positions on the commission. I will empower
the commission to move forward with next steps and develop recommendations from the Needs Assessment recently completed using federal funds. No action has been taken by the current commissioners.
As I have campaigned for County Executive, I have heard a constant concern about a lack of trust in county government. People believe that decisions are being made outside the public process and outside the public interest. People feel their comments do not matter to their elected officials. Within the first 100 days, I will propose the creation of an
independent ethics commission as well as restore strong ethics laws that make it clear that county elected officials cannot do business with the county or profit from their positions. I will add back the penalties for serious ethics violations eliminated by the current administration. Citizens have a right to know what their government is doing and need to trust that their
government is working for them not for special interests.
Join me to shape the future of Frederick County. Together, we can ensure a bright future by managing growth and our budget responsibly, ensuring exceptional schools, and taking care of our seniors. Vote for leadership you can trust. Vote for Jan Gardner.
To learn more about Jan Gardner
visit her campaign website at www.jangardner.org
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