Democrats Running For Frederick County Executive Discuss The Issues

They discuss their vision for the county’s future.

(L-R) Boffman, Hagen, Fitzwater

Frederick, Md (KM) Primary election day is July 19th, and there are three Democrats running for the post of County Executive.

Councilwoman Jessica Fitzwater, a Frederick County Public Schools’ teacher,  says education is her top priority. “As a teacher and a parent of an FCPS student, I know how important it is to make sure that our kids have a high quality of education That means having good teachers and educators’  support personnel in the budding, and everybody has the resources they need to succeed,” she says.

Another Democrat, Councilman Kai Hagen, said he supports public education, vocational instruction and Frederick Community College. But he wants to develop a four-year plant to increase per pupil spending in Frederick County, which has the lowest  rate in the state. “It’s a moving target because other communities  are increasing their funding. To move Frederick County from 24th of 24 to 12th,” he said. “That puts us  in the middle of the pack. In a state where there are bigger, wealthier counties, and smaller, less well off counties, I think it’s an appropriate first goal.”

The third Democrat in the County Executive race is Daryl Boffman, who once served on the Board of Education. He’s emphasizing his business experience. :”When you ‘re talking about hiring and training people, putting together a vision and mission statement, and goals and objectives, when you’re talking about putting together a budget, and managing a budget and presenting a budgets, and  working with people and understanding the difference between assets and liabilities, because I’ve also been a vice president of finance,” he said.

Each of the candidates were asked what Frederick County would look like if they were elected. Councilwoman Fitzwater spoke about the Livable Frederick Plan which was adopted by the Council. “I’m going to say the Livable Frederick vision because I think it’s beautiful that Frederick County is a unique and vibrant community where people live work and thrive while experiencing a strong place of belonging,” she said.

As for Councilman Hagen, “I think it would look a lot like it looks today. We’re doing a lot of things really well. This is a great place to live. We have a great quality of life. County government functions very effectively. We have a lot of outstanding public services and facilities,” he said.

Boffman says the county needs to make it easier for businesses to grow. “Do we want to attract more cybersecurity companies to Frederick County? Do we want to attract more IT businesses? Where is the industry going? How can we get ahead of it to make sure we are a breeding ground for successful businesses based the plan we want to put in place, and who we want to have here to help generate the revenue,” he says.

The only Republican running for County Executive is State Senator Michael Hough.

Incumbent County Executive Jan Gardner is in her second consecutive term in office, and cannot run for a third consecutive term.

By Kevin McManus