Why Ecker merits a second termShortly we'll be marching...

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

October 30, 1994

Why Ecker merits a second term

Shortly we'll be marching into our polling places to choose officials we feel will best govern us over the next four years. We, who followed our daily papers (for me, The Sun), had a steady stream of positive press these past four years on Dr. Charles I. Ecker as our county executive. There simply was to be no contest -- we all must have felt Howard County had a gold mine in Chuck Ecker.

What troubles me is at the last minute an opponent appears on the scene with a "single" issue of "stop growth." First, no one can stop growth. Growth has been continuous since the Pilgrims landed on their rock. What we can do is control it and plan for the growth that is going to occur -- that's what Chuck Ecker is about.

As a "nonbusiness" person, I still understand how much we need business to survive to be a healthy county. . . . Businesses bring jobs. And, they bring tax revenues into our county so desperately needed to keep our own taxes down. . . .

What really scares me is Susan Gray's liberal use of the legal system to satisfy her whims and causes at a stiff penalty to county and state tax dollars. For me, it brings to question her reasons for wanting to be our county executive. Her actions cost Howard County countless legal hours responding to her many filed Freedom of Information requests, challenges and protests involving public works, and planning and zoning. . . .

She refights previously lost battles, and the holes in our pockets get bigger. Having a case thrown out because of a missed deadline casts a shadow of doubt on her own capability as a lawyer. Her vendetta against the state's road system is another story. There are other avenues, less costly to the taxed public, she could follow as a means to an end. . . .

What endeared me to Dr. Ecker is his commitment to all the people in Howard County. At first, I feared he'd be a "one segment of the population" promoter because of the strength he drew from his field of education (I, too, was a sympathetic former teacher and understood their plight). But, with the economy "in the pits," deficits to deal with and many things needing attention, Dr. Ecker needed to (and did) take a step back and began by responding to the county's most pressing fiscal matters. . . . As a Commission on Aging and Florence Bain Senior Council member, I've seen him dig deep in a near-empty pot for the welfare of the elderly. His door opened more quickly to historic preservationists and other smaller groups than I expected, and the needy didn't suffer by his hand, either. . . .

Jesselyn V. Johl

Columbia

Gray Not Elitist

Week after week, Kevin Thomas keeps harping on how Susan Gray is an "elitist." . . .

What Kevin Thomas and Chuck Ecker don't get is that Susan Gray has support from every segment of Howard County. Her supporters live in townhouses, mobile home parks, single-family homes, condominiums and apartments.

Almost every neighborhood has people who are volunteering their time to help Susan with her campaign. Why? Because the Ecker administration finally has reached the saturation point in ignoring the wishes of Howard County taxpayers and homeowners.

Over the last four years, the Ecker administration has managed to lie to or completely ignore the wishes of almost every neighborhood. And in the majority of these instances, land developers and their associates have been the ones to benefit. The people of Howard County are not stupid. We've figured it out. Mr. Ecker is not working for us.

Neighborhood volunteers for Susan Gray hand-delivered 60,000 fliers to the doors of Howard County voters for the primary election. These neighbors are going to deliver 60,000 more before Nov. 8. Mr. Ecker has to mail his information because he doesn't have the support of the people.

Mr. Ecker raised over $200,000 since the last election. The "elitist" candidate is Chuck Ecker. He had a $200-a-plate dinner at Tersiguel's French country restaurant (owned by a land developer) and a $250-per-person golf outing. In contrast, Susan Gray's major fund-raisers were two square dances in her barn at $25 per person with children under 12 free.

Kevin Thomas can harp all he wants about Susan Gray being an elitist. The people of Howard County know the truth: Susan Gray is the people's candidate.

Alan Lefcourt

Elkridge

Gray's Own Enemy

Democratic nominee Susan Gray has had quite a week. Faced with the formation of the Democrats for Ecker Committee, she has stated that people have been badgered to join. To the contrary, the committee represents a cross-section of Howard County Democrats, many of whom have asked to be included, and the list is burgeoning.

She also has attempted to make long-time county employees, who have served through Democratic as well as Republican administrations, the focus of her ire by promising to fire them.

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