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Shank announces bid for re-election to House of Delegates

June 11, 2002|by LAURA ERNDE

laurae@herald-mail.com

Kicking off what he said will be a "fact-based, issue-oriented campaign," Del. Christopher B. Shank on Monday outlined the things he said he will fight for if re-elected to the Maryland House of Delegates.

He listed his four main priorities as holding the line on taxes, ensuring public safety, helping to preserve the county's farmland and supporting education.

"This campaign is going to be about focusing on a vision for Washington County," said Shank, 29, a Republican.

Jim Meadows, his boss at Meadows Agency of Insurance, introduced Shank to about 40 friends and family members who gathered at the Williamsport American Legion for the announcement.

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Shank acknowledged the support of his family, especially his wife, Cindy, who is expecting the couple's first child in September.

Anticipation of fatherhood has made him even more committed to running for re-election so he can make Washington County a better place to raise children, he said.

Shank touted his accomplishments during his first four-year term in the House.

Shank pushed for state legislation that required the Washington County Commissioners to spend an extra $500,000 a year to pay down a water and sewer debt that was $52 million at the time.

He worked on a local program to help senior citizens cope with rising prescription drug costs and helped establish Maryland's first state Civil War battlefield at South Mountain, he said.

Shank has opposed construction of cell phone towers in rural southern Washington County and a truck stop near Williamsport. He recently joined residents of the St. James area in their effort to block a proposed golf course community from drawing on the area's water supply.

"I've ruffled some feathers along the way but I don't regret it for one minute," he said.

Shank said he wants to make sure police officers and volunteer firefighters have the tools they need.

"One thing that Sept. 11 taught us is not to take our safety for granted," he said.

To protect children from sex offenders, Shank said he would pursue legislation to force Internet providers to ban child pornography.

To promote sensible growth, he said he would push for construction of a Funkstown bypass.

He said he supports President Bush's education plan and would trust local school boards, and not "bureaucrats in Annapolis" to make decisions.

Shank did not mention his opponent in the primary, Del. Robert A. McKee.

Gov. Parris Glendening's legislative redistricting plan forced the two incumbents into a runoff in District 2B. No Democrats have filed to run so far.

McKee filed for re-election in January, declaring he would not disrupt his family by moving back to District 2A, which was redrawn to encompass the northern tier of Washington County from Big Pool to Cascade.

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