The three candidates for a seat on the Baltimore County Council representing the 3rd District agree that a key issue is controlling development in the county's largest geographic district, but they part ways when talking about how to accomplish it.
With no Democrats running in the Sept. 10 primary, one of these three Republicans will win the seat on the council representing the northern part of the county.
The incumbent, Councilman T. Bryan McIntire, 72, of Glyndon, a practicing attorney, has represented the 3rd District since 1994. He calls himself an anti-development candidate who wants to protect the Loch Raven watershed and the rural nature of the district.
Daniel E. McKew, 45, of Glen Arm, president of the SunTrust Leasing Corp., is a certified public accountant and chairman of the board of the Injured Workers' Insurance Fund, a state agency that provides workers' compensation coverage to Maryland companies.
A native of the county, he said he wants to strike a balance by making sure that the county maintains what it has, while continuing to grow.
He said the issues in the district are the same everywhere in the county - water, schools and development.
Glen A. Thomas, 56, of Phoenix, a marketing consultant for colleges and universities, said the issues are development, land use and its impact on the environment.
He said there is still substantial development taking place in the district, including the construction of golf courses, and there have been inconsistencies in protecting the land.
McIntire, who has more than $195,000 left in his campaign fund three weeks before the primary election, said: "I want to continue preserving the rural county and also to preserve fiscal responsibility."
He pointed to his successful efforts in fiscal 2002 to reduce taxes to the level of constant yield, meaning that county income does not increase.
There had been a report that McIntire would retire after this election, but he said, "My philosophy is that if William Donald Schaefer can run, so can I." Schaefer, a former mayor of Baltimore and governor of Maryland, is seeking re-election as Maryland comptroller at age 80.
Three months ago, McKew changed his party affiliation from Democrat to Republican to run in the conservative north county district, where registered Democrats outnumber Republicans by about 2,300. He said he changed parties because he thought he would have a better chance of winning.
McKew ran as a Democrat for a seat in the House of Delegates from the 8th District representing Perry Hall and Parkville in 1990 and 1994 and lost both times.
"I have an ability to help this community, and I want to get into the county government," McKew said. "With my background in business and the community, I want to contribute."
McKew has raised more than $37,000 for his campaign, with about $20,000 remaining, according to campaign finance records filed last week with the state Board of Elections.
Thomas, who has about $700 left out of a campaign fund of $1,300, said he was running on his own and had not sought any endorsements.
Thomas, who stressed his affiliation with Republican clubs for more than 30 years, lost to Democratic Councilman Joseph Bartenfelder in 1998 for the 6th District council seat.
Thomas said he decided to run again for council because there was substantial unchecked development taking place. His neighborhood became part of the 3rd District after the council districts were redrawn this year.
Thomas said one of the most significant issues facing the county is the appointment of the school board, which accounts for about half of the county's budget every year. Thomas said the board should be appointed by the council, rather than by the governor.