The following letter was distributed by Stephen Wright. A copy was provided to The Dagger upon request. It has been edited only to remove contact information:
Harford Co citizens need strong, common sense leadership to face the challenges the future is bringing to us. We are fortunate that Harford County is in high demand. BRAC will bring prosperity in the form of more jobs, both skilled and unskilled, a situation unparalleled in our history. The possibilities are almost mind-boggling! As a result, Harford County needs strong, common sense leadership if we are to fully realize this potential. I will provide that kind of leadership – that is why I am running for Harford County Executive, and I am asking you to support my candidacy.
I believe the present administration is truly befuddled. Either by direct action or indecisiveness the present administration has impeded the private business sector from doing what it does best – finding ways to satisfy the needs of a boom economy and provide the jobs that will increase our economic prosperity. The government has blocked practical solutions to problems in its efforts to control what should be free. This must be stopped. As a professional, I know how to run things in a way that allows growth, and managing government in the best interest of our citizens.
Responsible government (when confined to its proper functions) is capable of solving certain problems. But bad government as presently exists in Harford County, has become the problem. Increase taxes, increased regulations, increased and irresponsible spending and OBSTRUCTIVE BUREAUCRACY is harmful to the economy of Harford County and reduces liberty to its citizens.
Able leaders realize that we do not have a revenue problem – we have a management problem. We must reduce taxes, as we’ve been Taxed Enough Already! Government must cut wasteful spending and more efficiently use present levels of the revenue it collects. Growth must be managed in a way so as not to stifle growth, which results in lost jobs, lost income, lost homes, and family troubles.
GOVERNMENT must get out of the way of private investment so that the local economy is stimulated, jobs are created, and prosperity is allowed to flourish. It’s not a revenue problem; it’s a management problem. Strong leadership is needed to properly manage this county. I can provide that leadership.
It should be noted, Harford County government has refused to foster Charter Schools. Since the Charter School legislation was passed under Gov. Bob Ehrlich, Harford County has blocked Charter School applications that precluded private investment partnerships to construct schools without public money. The failure of Harford County to allow Charter Schools to be built has cost the county millions of dollars in new school construction and would have been a funding mechanism to allow government to reduce taxes, such as the impact fee on new homes.
Harford County has refused to eliminate the unfair and discriminatory impact fees, (which is really a tax). Make no mistake about it, the impact fee is assessed against many of our own citizens who have lived here for years. Not only is it burdensome to pay such a fee (up to $ 8,269 per home) at the time our citizens pull the permit to build on their land, in many cases these citizens do not cause any additional financial impacts to our county. Therefore the impact fee is discriminatory and possibly illegal. If it is not illegal, it should be. This impact tax fee must be eliminated!
I support our teachers in the classroom. With a bulging education budget of over $ 400 Million Dollars per year, our class room teachers should be provided the books and supplies they need to properly do their job. There should be no dilapidated desks that have been said to cause harm to our children. Classroom roofs should not leak. All harmful asbestos should be removed from all of our schools. Our classroom teachers, who are responsible for molding the next generation of our citizenry, deserve our thanks and support. Notwithstanding, the waste in the educational system must be eliminated.
Spending our way out of poverty doesn’t work and is wrong!
Refusing to accept Charter Schools in Harford County is wrong!
Refusing to cut government, taxes, and regulation, especially when businesses are suffering, downsizing, and failing altogether, is also wrong!
So I am asking for your help and support for my candidacy for Harford County Executive in 2010. You can do this in, at least, two ways.
First, allow me to meet with you to discuss your concerns about Harford County government’s policies that have handcuffed your efforts to grow your business and dampened your dreams for a better Harford County;
Second, contribute and financially support my campaign.
I look forward to meeting with you soon, and I truly appreciate your financial support.
Very truly yours,
Stephen M. Wright, CPA, CFE
Wright for Harford County Executive
Authority: Friends of Stephen Wright, Krista D. Wright, Treasurer