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Perini to run for House

June 25, 2002|by LAURA ERNDE

laurae@herald-mail.com

When the Maryland General Assembly beefed up its security this year, Peter E. Perini Sr. was one of the first people to get a photo identification card.

As president of Magnolia Management in Hagerstown, which operates five nursing homes in the state, Perini spent the session following issues important to the industry.

But he also was laying the groundwork for something more personal, a run for the Maryland House of Delegates.

Perini, a Democrat, filed for the office the day after Gov. Parris Glendening unveiled a legislative redistricting plan that created an open seat surrounding his Cresap Drive home north of Hagerstown.

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On Friday, the Maryland Court of Appeals issued a new plan that pits him against incumbent Republican Del. Robert A. McKee for the District 2A seat.

But Perini, 39, remained confident about his chances. One of his favorite things to say is that he's not running against anyone, he's running for the job.

In an interview at his office in Halfway, Perini said if elected he will draw on his experiences as husband to Cynthia Perini and father of three children who attend Paramount Elementary School.

Perini said he will make health care, education and improving Washington County his top priorities.

"I put a tremendous amount of effort in everything I do. I would put that same extraordinary effort into being a delegate," he said.

If Washington County had more clout in the legislature, the University System of Maryland Hagerstown Education Center would be nearing completion by now, Perini said.

Instead, preliminary work on the renovation of the Baldwin House complex is scheduled to start next week.

Perini has more name recognition than many other political newcomers. His father, Dominick Perini, owns Perini Construction in Hagerstown.

Asked whether he would use his position's influence to get business for his father's contracting company, Perini said, "that is the furthest thing from my mind."

Some Washington County lawmakers raised their eyebrows when Perini asked the Maryland General Assembly for $2.5 million two years ago on behalf of a newly formed nonprofit, the Magnolia Foundation.

The delegation decided the request came in too late.

In general, he describes himself as fiscally conservative.

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