Howard County Maryland Blog

Local Politics and Current Events

I pledge no tax increasess ii…

Posted by David Keelan on Wednesday, August 16, 2006

The nice thing about blogs is that when someone writes something one doesn’t agree with then one can almost immediately respond.  As opposed to a newspaper where one’s quotes may be edited, or only having the option to write a letter that may or may not appear in the following weeks paper when everyone has already forgot about the story.

Now, I think I asked some real questions in a related post.  Hatchet job?  Well, as I said.  Anyone can respond almost immediately to anything I post here.  I also got to once again highlight how Courtney Watson wanted to raise the tranfer tax.  So, here are the answers to the questions in my previous post from Melissa Covolesky.  Other than the defensive tone (judge for yourself) it is a reasonable explanation. 

I post Melissa’s response here because the comments don’t get a lot of visability.

Get real Dave, Gail Bates also sat for the Teachers edorsement and she and Warren have hit every single paper with their editorial whining that they DIDN”T get the endorsement. Warren has signed the pledge so what would he have done if they endorsed him? Humm? Also, why has Gail NOT signed the pledge? Maybe you could look into THAT.

I don’t need to explain the HCEA’s position to you – ask them. Do I need to get every voter’s assurance that they support 100% of the things I believe or is it enough that they support me more than Gail and Warren?

Is this evidence of YOUR inability to view issues in and of themselves and not solely in light of an US and Them mentality? If this is not the case, why is this post linking me to Courtney Watson? I signed the No New Tax Pledge at Grover’s Wednesday morning meeting, at his invitation, back in Jan or Feb I think. Gail?

I was very upfront with the teachers panel that while I might agree in theory with a particular program, that I *wouldn’t* raise taxes to fund them. I am big on reassessing programs and re-allocating money (something you will hear repeated throughout my campaign, interviews and every forum, if you have/had been listening) rather than just heaping money into programs for perpetuity. Maybe it was my candor to the interview board that led them to think they should endorse me over my opponents. Novel, huh? But certainly not within the scope of your attempted hatchet job.

Melissa

I noticed that Gail didn’t sign the pledge and I will ask her why she hasn’t.  I know Warren signed the pledge, I didn’t know he sat for the endorsement?  Is that true?  I will have to ask him, but I think I know the answer.

It is difficult for anyone to get a perfect rating with a voter or organization.  It just struck me that one is committed to not raising taxes and has the endorsement of two organizations that consistently support taxes.  How does one balance that in their official capacity?  I’d find it difficult to try to retain their endorsement and oppose them on tax increases.

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11 Responses to “I pledge no tax increasess ii…”

  1. Melissa said

    LOL – yes, it is a tad defensive, but that’s the tone when one is defending herself I guess. *~* That and I think I’m finally getting sick (run down) from the hectic pace I’ve been keeping since the Bar. More OJ is needed I guess.

  2. Jim Adams said

    You go Girl. Sometimes it’s a hard road, but stand by your convictions, your believes, and be true to yourself. We need your Leadership. I will bring the OJ tomorrow morning, so we have something to drink as we sign wave on Route 32.

    David keep looking over our shoulders, it not only keeps us honest, your site creates a location for us to explain our reasoning as well as our actions.

  3. I read with some amusement the exchange between My Opponent and the Blog Moderator over the question posed by several endorsements and the e-mail from the Maryland Taxpayers regarding the “Taxpayers Protection Pledge”. 

    First it’s important to answer the question that David posed – “Is it mutually exclusive to sign such a pledge and accept the endorsement of these organizations that supported every single tax increase during the Robey administration?

    Howard County Police Officers’ Association

    Howard County Teachers Union (HCEA) “

    In my view the endorsements and the signing of the pledge cannot co-exist for the following reasons;

    The Teacher & Police Union will always want increased spending for the welfare of their employees – it’s the principal reason for Unions to exist.
    When you spend time in Annapolis you realize that these groups are very aggressive about trying to get additional funding, even if it throws state budgets and budget formulas off.

    To answer some of what my opponent characterized about me – “Warren has signed the pledge so what would he have done if they endorsed him? Humm?”  In regards to the Teachers I didn’t participate in the interview process because I did not want the endorsement of a group that supports failing Baltimore Schools and I did not want to be associated politically with the likes of Delegate Liz Bobo and Del. Shane Pendergrass!  So no I did not want the endorsement of a “Big” Labor union.  The Police union did not at any time send me a questionnaire/interview me so I had no ability to opt-out of the interview process.  I am glad the Dan Bessick who runs the Police Union endorsement process and jointly serves on the Howard County Democrat Central Committee didn’t endorse me – again when I vote “No” on the vast majority of Union backed bills I could sleep with a clear conscience (and I have slept well over the last four years knowing that I was doing the right thing for the taxpayers of Maryland!)
    “I was very upfront with the teachers panel that while I might agree in theory with a particular program, that I *wouldn’t* raise taxes to fund them. I am big on reassessing programs and re-allocating money (something you will hear repeated throughout my campaign, interviews and every forum, if you have/had been listening) rather than just heaping money into programs for perpetuity. Maybe it was my candor to the interview board that led them to think they should endorse me over my opponents. Novel, huh? But certainly not within the scope of your attempted hatchet job.”  When you watch the budget process in Annapolis you realize that 99% of the money is given to Howard County by formula and the real decisions regarding how the money will be spent follows this process – the School Board creates the budget and the School Superintendent modifies and approves and then the budget is sent to the Howard County Council/ County Executive – at no point does the delegation get involved in those decisions.  I would at least hope that my opponent understands this and didn’t make promises to the Teachers Union thinking that as 1 delegate out of 141 She was going to suddenly re-task million and million of dollars for the Teachers Union.

    “Get real Dave, Gail Bates also sat for the Teachers edorsement and she and Warren have hit every single paper with their editorial whining that they DIDN”T get the endorsement”. I dispute the point that Gail and I wrote a “whining” letter, when we reviewed the bills the Teachers union cared about the score was heavily weighted on blocking the Governor’s attempt to help

    Baltimore City kids in failing schools.  Again I am glad that I supported the Maryland Department of Educations attempted take over of failing schools and if the unions don’t like that – tough!

    I would like to again thank David Keelan for hosting this blog and allowing a great discussion to ensue regarding the Delegate race.

  4. Melissa said

    The FOP endorsement is also a Union, yet my opponent readily accepts that one. Here is an excerpt from an article on Cave speculating why his opponent received the endorsement over him: (from the Examiner)

    Cave told the union he has added 18 positions in eight years, obtained newer vehicles and computers, and upgraded body armor.

    But Cave said in an interview with The Examiner that Fitzgerald pledged more proposals for sheriff’s deputies than he did.

    “He promised them everything in the world,” Cave said. “… I would like to give them everything they’re asking for, but that’s not going to happen.”

    SO it is apparent what their priorities were in handing out their endorsements. I don’t believe the Police Officer’s Association had interviews with the state level delegation – I did not interview nor ask for their endorsement. Nor did I have an opportunity to do so with the FOP.

    I respect Warren’s decision not to sit for the Teacher’s endorsement, but his slate partner did sit for it. And as a slate, they take each other’s good with the bad.

    Lastly, no promises were made to the teacher’s or anyone else. They are a lobbying organization like every other lobbying group. The most I can ever promise is to listen to concerns and keep a balanced budget. I have pledged with a clear head not to raise taxes and I intend to keep that and I made that clear to the teacher’s and to whoever else talks about funding.

    If there is so little discretion as to the budget, then please stop claiming your victories for keeping it balanced. You apparently have little to do with it, right? (I suspect whatever your response will be to this, and I wrote it in such a way to get a response, I as a delegate will have the same opportunities to influence the process through the committee/subcommittee process, just as you did. You can’t have it both ways.) I did intern in Annapolis for a senator and while I am obviously not as familiar at it as you are at this point, I do have a pretty good grasp of what I am getting into with the process.

  5. Not to get in an argument – I have a right to post just like you. You might want to check your facts on the FOP they are not or never have been a “Union” they are a “Fraternal Organization” as such they lobby for different things and they typically endorse Republicans like Governor Robert L. Ehrlich in the last election.

    Your comments about the Sherriffs Candidates have little bearing on how the FOP endorses.

    And just to make the record clear Gail and I agree ninety nine percent of the time and have a great record of accomplishment in Annapolis we run on our records because we have records and years of community service and commitment. Your not using the term “Slate” correctly – you have to look at what an entire party puts forth to correctly use the term (ie West Virginia and the “Mountain Party”) Gail and I are not a slate in that sense since the county GOP does not endorse in a primary!

    I have never claimed to single handidly “balance” the state budget, but again there is a law that requires a balanced budget – what I have said is that I support Governor Ehrlich’s fiscal responsibility and budget cutting in State Agencies…

  6. […] The question was for Melissa Covolesky.  She “replied” in the comments section which I put in a post (I pledge no tax increasess ii…) so it would get greater visability.  […]

  7. Melissa,Warren voted and worked on bills last year that attempt to try to give the Deputy’s in our under manned courtrooms, who are out on the streets, and issuing warrants.  Also we are keeping people, like you, safe. Union or not. It does not matter to me. I just do not want to tell one of my guy’s little girl that daddy is not coming home tonight just because we do not have enough deputys to do the job. Sheriff Cave today told the Times he did not know about our collective bargining bill. I met with him on it 8 times about it. You’re right you did not call me about any sheriff’s issues. What do you really know about the sheriff’s deputys saftey? Running for office I think you should know. Warren does. Union or not. Who cares. We put our lives on the line and I amthankfully still alive. So jump in the water and ask us our needs. That would be a new thing for us. Someone who cares!! Thanks Warren, we know you do.

  8. Melissa said

    Sir, as a Military Police Officer and a soldier, I know a thing or two about putting my life on the line for the safety of others. I have been shot at, had molotov cocktails thrown at my position and have intervened in more domestic violence cases than I care to recall. I am also quite well versed on the needs of a department since I commanded the law enforcement company at Fort Bragg for 2 years – a unit of 140 MP soldiers – a 22 man (& dog) K9 section, traffic investigators, drug suppression, special reaction team (our version of swat), school resource officers, bike patrol, AWOL apprehension, criminal investigators, 911 dispatchers (civilians in this section, not soldiers) and I could go on. I not only fully understand the manning needs, the shift rotation and the training requirements that should be provided, but I am likely among your biggest advocates. Having worked in the field for so long, I have a respect for Law Enforcement that few understand. But thanks for your clarification.
    Melissa

    Melissa

  9. Carrie Smith said

    Wait – how can you guys not be on a slate if you’re referring to your campaign finance entity as the Bates Miller Victory Slate – and the fact that you have only joint presence (such as the website).

  10. […] The FOP endorsed Warren Miller too.  Some people might say, “What?  Warren Miller is anti-union.  Why would they endorse him?”  For the same reasons that they support Sandy, Kasemyer, DeBoy and others.  Because Warren worked with and supported the Sheriff’s Deputies in Annapolis when it counted.  I wonder if Melissa sought their endorsement?  Melissa posted a comment in response to the FOP comments in a previous post.  There is one thing you can say about Melissa – she is passionate.  However, I would call her response to the FOP a little more than defensive, but it doesn’t tell me if she sought the endorsement.  Melissa is a former Military Police commander.  She has law enforcement credentials.  The FOP only said – “Why haven’t we heard from you before?  The only time you mention us is after we endorse your opponent.”  They didn’t question her law enforcement credentials they only explained that when they needed help Warren was there. […]

  11. Mellisa, My hat is off to you. God bless you for all you have done. I did not know your history. Thank you so much for Service.

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