The mayor of Hampstead hopes to make a transition from town politics to the Maryland House of Delegates.
Republican Haven N. Shoemaker Jr., 40, announced his candidacy recently and became the first to file for one of two seats representing District 5A, which includes North Carroll, Westminster, Finksburg and most communities along the Route 140 corridor.
"I wanted to be the first one out there," he said.
A self-employed attorney, Shoemaker could face a three-term incumbent in the September Republican primary, should Del. Nancy R. Stocksdale decide to run again.
"I am definitely willing to put my record up and let voters decide," Shoemaker said.
Del. Tanya Thornton Shewell, who holds the other 5A seat, has yet to run for election. She was appointed to the legislature a year ago, when Carmen Amedori resigned.
"Our delegation has a propensity to micromanage," Shoemaker said. "They should do a better job respecting the wishes of the electorate who voted for this board of commissioners and defer to that board more in making their decisions. Local government governs best."
Shoemaker, who calls himself a fiscal conservative, has served on the Hampstead council since 1997 and was elected mayor in 2003. As mayor, he helped finalize the Hampstead Bypass, a $76 million, 4 1/2 -mile state road project that has been planned for nearly 40 years. Construction will begin early next year and take about three years to complete.
Shoemaker plans to conduct a mail and door-to-door campaign. As a state legislator, Shoemaker would tackle unfunded mandates, which he calls "indirect tax increases," and would work to ban the gasoline additive MTBE.
"More than anything, unfunded mandates prompted me to run," he said. "Forcing local government to enact these items without funding them is a huge problem."