Since taking on the post of Anne Arundel County Executive early this year, Laura Neuman hasn't had much time to spend in her old stomping grounds of Howard County.
But the former president and CEO of the Howard County Economic Development Authority, who was appointed Anne Arundel County Executive in late February, made time to stop by the Savage Mill Friday, Nov. 22, to endorse Republican state Sen. Allan Kittleman in his bid for Howard County executive.
"Allan is willing to make the tough decisions," Neuman told the group of more than 100 people gathered in the basement of Ram's Head Tavern for the event, sponsored by Merritt Properties. "He's very practical when it comes to policy and what needs to be done to build businesses in our community and help our families thrive in our community."
Neuman, a Republican, said she hoped to work with Kittleman as her counterpart in Howard. Though her term ends in 2014, she announced in July that she would be seeking re-election.
The former technology entrepreneur said Kittleman understood the needs of the county's business community.
"I'm focused on creating jobs, economic development, economic prosperity for the citizens of our county and state. And my partner here is focused on the same thing, which is why I'm so excited that we're working together for the same thing," she said. "We can work across county lines and make some real progress in the state of Maryland."
And she said she thought progress would be made by expanding opportunities for hard work. Neuman's personal story is one of overcoming challenges — she grew up poor and was able to work her way up through several technology companies before she was hired as head of the HCEDA.
"Hard work should equal opportunity," Neuman said. "Opportunity should be available to everyone who is willing to work hard for it."
It's a message that Kittleman has promoted at his own events, and he repeated it last week.
"We're all about equal opportunity but not equal outcomes," he said. "We want people to work hard and be able to be successful. We don't want government to be in their way but we also don't want government to pull them down either. … and there are some people who will need help anyway, and we want to be there for them too."
Neuman said she thought partisan politics should stay out of the race for the county's top position.
"It's not about party," she said, to loud applause from the room. "It's not about working across party lines, it's about we're all here for the greater good. … We need leaders who are willing to work together and who are focused on solutions instead of divisiveness."
Gisriel says he's raised $60,000
Mike Gisriel, a former delegate from Towson and one of the nine Democratic candidates for a House seat in District 12, held a fundraiser at Greystone Grill in Ellicott City on Thursday, Nov. 21.
In a speech to the room of about two dozen, Gisriel focused on his experience and connections in Annapolis, which he says set him apart from the other candidates.
Gisriel also said he had raised $60,000 for his campaign so far, and expected to have $100,000 by January. Campaign finance reports won't be released until mid-January.
Republican enters District 12 race
Republicans in District 12 finally have a candidate. Joseph Hooe, a businessman from Lansdowne, filed for a delegate seat Nov. 20. Hooe, 45, ran in the former District 12A against incumbent delegates Steven DeBoy and Jimmy Malone and Republican challenger Albert Nalley in 2010, finishing third with 24.7 percent of the vote.
With Hooe in the race, there are now 10 candidates for three seats in the newly re-drawn District 12, which encompasses parts of Howard and Baltimore counties, including Columbia, Catonsville, Elkridge, Lansdowne and Arbutus.