ON TUESDAY, all of us in Anne Arundel County have an opportunity to elect new leadership for our county government. It is an important decision which will, to a great extent, determine ,, the quality of our educational, public safety, environmental and many other services upon which we depend and which are crucial determinants of the quality of our lives. It is an election the significance of which transcends politics.
I am writing to ask that you support my candidacy for county executive. All of us here in the county have worked long and hard to get where we are today. We have an excellent county. The quality of life here is, for the most part, good . . . very good. We have a lot to be proud of, and a lot more yet to accomplish, which is why I am running for county executive.
Why should you vote for me rather than my opponent? The first reason is experience. County government has become a big, complicated business, too big and too complicated for anyone but a specialist to handle. Of the two candidates, I am the one with 30 years' management experience, as the owner of my own company and as a senior executive with two large corporations. I am the one with 8 years' experience in county government. I've had my on- the-job training, and I am ready now to be your next county executive.
The second reason is priorities. Priorities tell you what I will protect and, if necessary, not protect in the event that financial constraints limit us short of accomplishing the full spectrum of our objectives. If I have to cut, fine. I'll cut from the bottom up. Fiscal responsibility has always been a difficult task, but understand this: The progress we have made in education, public safety and the environment will not be compromised under a Sophocleus administration. Under my leadership, Anne Arundel County will continue to make substantial progress within a fiscally sound program we can all afford.
The third major reason why you should support my candidacy has to do with my style of government. I have always had a fundamental confidence in the intelligence of the people of Anne Arundel County, in their good will and common sense. No one knows better what the people want than the people themselves. What better partner could a county executive have than the citizens who elected him to that office?
Throughout my tenure in county government, I have continually demonstrated a willingness to listen to and work with our families, civic groups and community organizations. I need your help to know what services you want and to improve the services we already provide. I need your help in understanding how, as your county executive, I can guide our county in striking the proper balance between what services we would like on one hand, and what we are willing to pay for those services on the other.
My opponent seems to enjoy focusing on the negative potential of our county economy and government. I don't see it that way. Under my leadership, with the proper experience and my willingness to bring the people into the government process, we can and will continue to improve the quality of county services, cost-effectively. Working together, we can help assure Anne Arundel County the positive, bright future our families deserve. Working together, we can build an even better Anne Arundel County.
I respectfully ask for your vote on Election Day and for the privilege of serving as your county executive for the next four years.
Mr. Sophocleus is the Democratic candidate for Anne Arundel County executive.