MD State Senate Candidates Speak On Tax Policy, Job Creation. Sm - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

MD State Senate Candidates Speak On Tax Policy, Job Creation. Small Business Growth

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MARYLAND - With the primary election coming up next month, Maryland State Senate candidates are trying to reach as many voters as they can.

District 37 and 38 candidates got together for a forum at Wor-Wic Community College Thursday afternoon, as they went head to head on important issues pertaining to the Eastern Shore. They sparred over tax policy, small business growth, off-shore wind energy, unemployment and job creation.

In District 38, incumbent Senator Jim Mathias (D-District 38) and Delegate Mike McDermott (R-District 38B) are unopposed in the primary, but come the general election, they'll be fighting for a seat at the table.

"We spend too much money in Maryland. We've grown government spending by over 40 percent in the last eight years. We're going to take about $1.5 billion from teach pensions over the next five years, just to balance our bottom line. This is not the road to prosperity," McDermott said.

"My main priority is looking at rural prosperity. Rural growth, making sure we protect and grow our industries here.What we what to be able to do is grow jobs here, get out of the way by getting rid of these regulations  -- taking them off the books so that we can allow business to move forward, create jobs keep our families here, allow new families to come and relocate here," Mathias said.

In District 37, incumbent Senator Richard Colburn (R-District 37) wants to continue his fight for the agriculture and seafood industries on the shore.

"We've been unable to pass legislation to have an economic impact statement on what these phosphorus tool management regulations will do to the poultry industry. We know it will decimate it. But we need the fiscal impact statement. I was able to get that language passed through the general assembly, through the governor's $39 billion operating budget. So with seniority, it brings power," Colburn said.

Up against him in the republican primary is Delegate Addie Eckardt (R-District 37B) who believes her experience with healthcare will tip the scales for voters.

"I have concerns about the destabilization of our hospital system. If we're not very careful and deliberate in how we provide services. The executive branch of government is making decision without adequate input from legislators who may have expertise in the areas that they are pursuing. I think that's really critical. To my knowledge, there's not a healthcare professional in the Senate, and I think I would bring that to the table," Eckardt said.

Underdog Christopher Robinson (Democrat) says the answer to bringing Maryland to prosperity is education.

"I would make our community college the crown jewel of our town. Because businesses depend on it. What I find is the most important thing for any small business owner, is having a well-qualified labor force to choose from. Any business that wants set up a business, stay in a business or grow needs talented kids," he said.

Primary elections will be held on June 24 with the general elections taking place on November 4th.

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