Tues. - democrats county commissioners

September 04, 1998

Primary Forums '98

     Washington County Commissioner:  fourth in a series of five questions

QUESTION 4: What are your plans to establish a better dialogue between the commissioners, school board, Hagerstown Mayor and Council, and the state delegation?


Julianna M. Albowicz

As an elected official of the town of Clear Spring, I have continually maintained dialogue with the State Delegation, the Washington County Commissioners, the school board, and all nine municipalities. As County Commissioner, I will insure that the board maintains dialogue with all parties at all times.

William C. Blair

Between the Washington County Commissioners and the Washington County School Board, I think the meeting should be changed so that the two boards could attend each other's meetings and not meet at the same time. The Hagerstown Mayor and Council, and the State Delegation need to sit down and discuss the needs and wants of the Washington County Citizens.


Ronald L. Bowers

The premise is wrong. Dialog exists but nothing happens. Relationships need to expand beyond dialogue. The working relationship between the County Commissioners and the school board shows what happens when you get off the phone, out of the conference room and into the classroom. Things get done! Field visits and working together solves problems.

William M. Breichner

I would hope to encourage the commissioners to assign an individual member to serve as liaison with the responsibility to meet on a regular basis with a member of each group to exchange information and ideas and to keep the board informed. Joint meetings should be scheduled on a quarterly basis.

Patricia Crowther

Harmony and cooperation can only happen if the commissioners approach this problem with an open mind. I feel that we can improve the relationship with these other groups if we meet on a regular basis and try to use our skills of conciliation to solve our differences and meet the needs of the total community.

Ronnie Hines

I feel that once a month all these representatives should meet to discuss problems. I do not feel that I would have a problem because I have met and know a few of them. I have 40 hours of facilitator training which teaches teamwork, brainstorming, and problem solving. I think this would help solve some of the problems.

Andrew R. Humphreys

The development from the grassroots of a common vision for our county's future would provide direction for county representatives, the school board, and every municipality. With that vision in place, let's explore (1) routine joint meetings with these groups; (2) comprehensive planning on issues requiring coordinated joint action; (3) informal information exchanges to facilitate better solutions.

Linda C. Irvin-Craig

Add to this list the other county towns and our federal representatives and take a posture of request rather than demand. I have established a good rapport with members of all of these entities and negotiate fairly. Go into the communication process with a carrot rather than a stick. The incentives to work together are incredible for all concerned.

Delmas Knight

I would need to know what the existing problems are before I could offer specific answers. However, one of the basics would be to keep an open line of communication and to know all of the facts before making any decisions. Do what is in the best interest of all parties involved.

Eugene Buddie Morris

Frank and cordiality I do expect. We got to do our best for our citizens of Washington County. This is their money and entrusted to five persons only.

John L. Schnebly

First of all, due to my business and civic involvement of the last two decades, I have previously established working relationships with most of the elected officials referenced above. I believe most of these officials would say I have a reputation for working for consensus and solving problems in good faith. These leadership traits are essential to building trust.

Paul L. Swartz

This is my forte. I have served as a mediator and negotiator most of my adult life. I have good people skills. I have offered to promote unity and cooperation among all governmental agencies. Dialogue is developed by: 1. Listening 2. Sharing 3. Honest approach with no hidden agendas 4. Truthfulness 5. Agree to disagree 6. Kind and gentle approach.

Joseph D. Swope Jr.

I would also include in those groups, all the municipalities of the county. I would continue to hold monthly meetings and work sessions with each group, then try to have quarterly meetings with all groups together, if possible. Internet and e-mail communications, between those regular meetings, with regular phone calls, as needed department and agency heads should also meet.

Sue Tuckwell

Intergovernmental cooperation is the key to success and future prosperity of our community. Regularly-scheduled meetings between the commissioners and each group must be held without fail as a routine part of doing business for the county. Dialogue must continue throughout the year, not just at budget time or just prior to each General Assembly session.

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