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Serafini, Parrott saving money on local offices

January 10, 2011|By ANDREW SCHOTZ | andrews@herald-mail.com

To start, Del.-elect Neil Parrott is keeping his local legislative office very close by. It will be in the basement office of his home.

Del. Andrew A. Serafini has stopped renting space at Williamsport Town Hall for his local office. Instead, his legislative assistant will work at his Hagerstown business office.

Serafini, R-Washington, said he and Parrott will save money with their consolidations — a small nod to Maryland’s dire budget outlook for the coming year.

“We need to do what we can to tighten our belts,” Serafini said.

The state’s budget deficit, estimated at $1.6 billion, will be a top priority for the Maryland General Assembly when it convenes for the 2011 session on Wednesday.

Parrott, R-Washington, said state legislators get a budget to pay for staff, an office, printing and mailing.

He said he already has a home office for his business, Traffic Solutions Inc., so he’ll have his legislative office there, too, for now.

Marilee Kerns, his part-time legislative employee, will work sometimes at Parrott’s business home office and sometimes at her home, he said.

He said he might pick another place for a local office after this year’s session.

Serafini’s new local legislative employee, Rebecca Fishack, will work at his business office, Serafini Financial Services, which is off Eastern Boulevard.

The business is outside Subdistrict 2A, which Serafini represents, but he said he was told that’s OK.

Serafini and his predecessor, Robert A. McKee, used office space at Williamsport Town Hall for several years. Serafini said the rent cost $200 a month.

Serafini said the Hagerstown office will be more central for Subdistrict 2A, which starts in Cascade in the northeast part of the county, and runs west to Cearfoss and south to Williamsport.

Serafini’s local office was open four days a week, but now will be open five days a week.

Turnover within the Washington County delegation from the last election has led to some new local offices, but other offices will stay put.

Del. John P. Donoghue, D-Washington, is keeping his office inside the University System of Maryland at Hagerstown building.

Del. LeRoy E. Myers Jr., R-Washington/Allegany, hasn’t changed his Clear Spring office.

However, he and Sen. George C. Edwards, R-Garrett/Allegany/Washington, have moved an office they share from one spot in Cumberland to another.

Sen.-elect Christopher B. Shank, R-Washington, is sticking with the Boonsboro office he used as a delegate, but is thinking about finding a spot in Hagerstown.

“I’m keeping my eye out for something more central,” he said.

District 2, which Shank will represent, covers most of Washington County.

Sen.-elect Ronald N. Young, D-Frederick, has opened a local office on East Church Street in Frederick.

Del.-elect Michael Hough, R-Frederick/Washington, hadn’t made up his mind as of last week, but guessed that he probably would have a local office in Brunswick, Md., where he lives.

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