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Vaughn running for City Council

August 25, 2000

Vaughn running for City Council



By DAN KULIN / Staff Writer


In 1973, President Richard Nixon had just been re-elected, the Vietnam War was winding down and Hagerstown West Ender Larry Vaughn was elected to the City Council.

Vaughn was re-elected in 1977, then ran for reelection again in 1981 and was defeated. He has been a candidate for mayor or council in every city election since.

This week Vaughn registered as a City Council candidate for the 2001 election.

Vaughn, a Democrat, said if elected his primary goal would be to bring back the ward system for electing council members. He said the current at-large system of city elections, in which each candidate is elected by voters from the entire city, has left the city with a mayor and council almost entirely from the North End.

Vaughn said the ward system, in which voters from five districts or wards each elected a council member, ensured fairer representation for the different city neighborhoods.

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"I'm getting taxed without representation," said Vaughn, noting that none of the city's current elected officials live in the city's West End.

The last city election in which council members were elected from wards was 1981.

Also, Vaughn said if elected he would try to add two more drug-finding dogs and two new officers to the city police force.

Vaughn opposes using city funds to build a new minor league baseball stadium. He's against plans for a new Wal-Mart Supercenter near Funkstown, and opposes expanding the West View Homes public housing project.

He wants reporters to sit in on mayor and council closed-door sessions. Vaughn said the reporters would have to agree not to publicize anything heard at the closed meetings, but they would be objective observers making sure the elected officials limit their discussions to topics legally permitted to be discussed in a closed meeting.

Vaughn also wants the city to sell the Hagerstown Ice & Sports Complex, lower the greens fees at the city golf course and consolidate some Hagerstown and Washington County government departments and jobs such as snow plowing, inspections and the parks departments.

Vaughn, 58, lives at 734 W. Franklin St. and has been trying to sell his house for about a year. Vaughn said he would move to another Hagerstown address if the house is eventually sold.

He worked at the Mack Trucks Hagerstown plant as a shipping and receiving clerk until retiring in 1989.

Vaughn has been a volunteer member of the Hagerstown Fire Department for more than 25 years, and is vice president of Western Enterprise Fire Co.

Vaughn and fellow former City Councilman Ira P. Kauffman Jr., 68, were the only two council candidates for the 2001 city election as of Friday. The filing deadline is Jan. 26.

Kauffman, a Democrat, was a councilman from 1977 to 1981. Kauffman wants to bring back the ward system too.

The city primary election is March 13. The general election is May 15.

Council members are paid $8,000 a year.

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