Endorsements in Council District 7

August 26, 1994

Change comes slowly to Anne Arundel County Council's District 7, which covers South County and Crofton. The rural landscape has not altered much through the years. Neither has its local representation; Councilwoman Virginia P. Clagett has served this area for 20 years. This election will mark the end of that era, however. Mrs. Clagett, barred from seeking a sixth term because of a term-limit law, is running for the House of Delegates. As the leadership of the district changes, the issues -- preserving the rural setting and the environment, controlling rubble landfills and monitoring growth around Crofton -- do not.

The Democratic primary features three candidates, all of them familiar names in South County: school board member Dorothy D. Chaney, perennial candidate Patricia O'Brien, and attorney Joseph Collinson III, the son of a former county commissioner, who is active in his church but otherwise offers little in the way of community experience.

Our endorsement goes to Mrs. Chaney. She has been a fairly quiet board member, but, with education comprising almost 60 percent of the county budget, the council could use her nine years experience on the school board. Yes, the board has been through some difficult, embarrassing times recently. But the board's problems cannot be laid exclusively at Mrs. Chaney's feet. She seems genuinely committed to the welfare of Anne Arundel's children and, as a South County native, understands concerns about growth.

On the Republican side, Mayo community activist Jacqueline Potter and James Overmier, comptroller for the Crofton Special Community Benefits District, are respectable candidates. But they cannot compare to Crofton attorney John Klocko III in terms of experience with county government.

Mr. Klocko, who nearly upset Mrs. Clagett in 1990, has served as chairman of the Eastern Bypass Task Force and the Amusement Licensing Commission, which oversees bingo parlors. He was the founder of the Greater Crofton Council. Philosophically, Mr. Klocko is a conservative in the mold of County Executive Robert R. Neall, a fact that works to his advantage in these economic times. He would be an intelligent, energetic addition to the council.

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