She's the first to enter the 2013 mayoral race.
She's the first candidate to enter the 2013 race for Mayor of Frederick. Alderwoman Karen Lewis Young has cast her hat into the ring.
Young has been on the Board of Aldermen since 2009. She says she can bring more change to the city as mayor compared to being an alderman. "I have a vision of where I'd like to see the city go in the future. And the reality is that if you want to be in a position to make that happen, to implement it, to make the decisions, to allocate the resources, you need to be on the executive side," she says.
Young says part of her vision calls for Frederick to be financially strong. "We have some challenges currently because of some unfunded obligations that could really hurt us down the road if we don't deal with them in a more urgent manner," says Young.
Other parts of her vision include a safe city, and emphasis on economic development. "I want our children and our grandchildren to live where they work. I want our citizens to have higher paying jobs in our community," she says. "Too many people go down the road or into Baltimore. We need to bring those jobs here."
But she acknowledges that this has been a problem for years, and many elected officials have promised to make it easier for citizens to live and work in Frederick city and the county. But she says she wants to make the city more business friendly, so that employers can thrive. "We need to have a stable tax structure but a growing tax base. We need to have transportation that's reliable and predictable," says Young. "If we don't have the transportation infrastructure, there's little incentive for businesses to grow and expand."
How to achieve that, she says, should include streamlining the permitting process, and establishing more public-private partnerships. Hand in hand with that, according to Young, is specific timelines for certain goals, and not just "sometime in the future." But she acknowledges that timelines may need to be altered.
There will probably be other candidates entering the race for Mayor of Frederick. Young says she welcomes that. "If we get more good ideas out to the public, and we communicate, and we get their input, then it will be a better election process," she says.
Frederick County Delegate Galen Clagett's name has been discussed as a possible candidate, although Clagett says he's not ready to discuss his political future yet. He says he's not running for another term in the House of Delegates.
Incumbent Mayor Randy McClement has not announced whether he plans to seek another term in office.