Skinner in 4th, Gardina in 5th Sun endorsements: GOP offers good choices for Towson area on council

incumbent best in northeast.

August 24, 1998

IT'S TOO bad that every election contest could not be like Baltimore County's 4th Councilmanic District GOP primary. The three candidates vying to replace incumbent Republican Douglas B. Riley, who is retiring after two terms, are credible; two, Kathleen F. Beadell and Wayne M. Skinner, are excellent.

Both are civic leaders who understand county issues and their district, which includes Towson, Lutherville and Timonium. Either would make a good council member, but Mr. Skinner should be the nominee. His breadth of experience outshines Ms. Beadell's.

Mr. Skinner -- 44, a longtime state employee and Loch Raven resident -- has a 20-year record of activism. He has been a leader in numerous neighborhood associations, and worked with Towson and Loch Raven groups to help revive business districts. He led the fight to re-open a library branch in Loch Raven. He has been appointed by county officials to education and parks boards. From 1994 to 1997, he served on the influential planning board.

Ms. Beadell, a Realtor and mother of two school-age children, is comparatively new to the civic scene. As a leader of the Greater Timonium Community Council, she has energetically worked on commercial development issues and crime prevention. Also well-versed on education matters, Ms. Beadell is the kind of person we like to see aspiring to public office.

At this point, however, Mr. Skinner is better qualified for the council. There is no contested Democratic primary in the 4th.

In the 5th, Democratic incumbent Vincent J. Gardina is challenged by 71-year-old former Orphan's Court Judge Alexander B. Page Jr. Faced with tough issues -- the Honeygo planned community, a shortage of parkland, decaying older neighborhoods and a proposed raceway -- Mr. Gardina has responded sensibly. He deserves the nomination. The Republican primary in the 5th is uncontested.

Tomorrow: Districts 6 and 7.

Baltimore County Council Districts 4 & 5

Candidates: The 4th has no contested primary among Democrats. Republican candidates are Kathleen F. Beadell, Walter Boyd and Wayne M. Skinner. The 5th has no contested primary among Republicans. Democratic candidates are Vincent J. Gardina and Alexander B. Page Jr.

Data: 1994 primary turnout: In District 4, 32 percent of Republicans voted and 20 percent of Democrats. In District 5, 39 percent of Republicans voted and 34 percent of Democrats. Salary: $30,900. Term: 4 years.

The districts: The urbanized 4th runs from the city line north through the Towson, Lutherville and Timonium areas. Citizens are concerned with the compatibility of commercial areas and residential neighborhoods. The renewal of Towson, the county seat, remains a major initiative. The 5th includes most of Baltimore County's waterfront and the Essex, White Marsh and Middle River areas. Manufacturing isn't the employment engine it once was, so jobs are a big concern among the eastern region's predominantly blue-collar populace. The revival of older neighborhoods and balancing development of valuable waterfront with environmental concerns are major issues.

Pub Date: 8/24/98

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