Hampstead mayor candidate: Chris Nevin

Hampstead mayor candidate: Chris Nevin
Chris Nevin is running for re-election as Hampstead mayor, with Zach Tomlin running against him. (Chris Nevin/Courtesy photo)

Ahead of this spring’s municipal elections, the Carroll County Times has asked candidates to provide information on themselves and their priorities. Their responses are listed here in full.

Chris Nevin is running for re-election as Hampstead mayor, with Zach Tomlin running against him. Here are Nevin’s responses.

Biographical information

Profession: First National Bank - Senior Vice President & Mid-Atlantic Regional Manager for Investment Real Estate Finance

Experience: 36 Years in Banking and Real Estate Finance

Education: Westminster High School; Loyola College - B.A. Accounting

Community activity:

  • North Carroll Recreation Council - Basketball Coach 1993 - 2009 & Referee 2010 - 2019
  • Carroll County Boys Basketball League - President - 2005 - 2009

Political Experience:

Town of Hampstead:

  • Mayor - November 2010 - Current
  • Town Council - May 2003 - November 2010
  • Mayor - 1995 - 2003
  • Planning & Zoning Commission – 1994 - 1995

Maryland Municipal League:

  • Board of Directors - 2005 - 2015
  • Carroll County Chapter – Numerous Officer positions and current President

Hampstead resident since 1989

Why do you want to serve in this role?

I have a deep passion for serving our Town and we have unfinished business – namely the State’s Main Street Revitalization Project and putting the North Carroll High School site back into greater use with a long-term plan that will benefit the entire community. On the Revitalization Project, we have developed numerous relationships with the State Highway Administration that have served us well, many of which date back to the development of the Bypass. We need to work with the State and its contractor C.J. Miller by leveraging those relationships to keep the project on track and deal with the inevitable changes that are required to the plan. For North Carroll High School, there is a separate question below.

How do you plan to represent your municipality’s interests in county government?

We have a great relationship with our Commissioner Dick Weaver and we talk almost every week. He has been a great partner. We have numerous relationships with county staff that we have leveraged to move projects forward – one recent example being Fuch’s. We look forward to working with Commissioners Wantz and Frazier and getting to know new Commissioners Rothstein and Bouchat better.

Name something you will begin working to accomplish as soon as your first week on the job?

As an incumbent, we are already working on important projects in our Town as mentioned above. We are in the middle of Budget season and its completion in June will be the main priority after the election. We recognize it's your money; therefore, we must plan appropriately in order to not add to your tax burden. We have a track record of prudent planning and spending and explain our thinking each summer in the Town Newsletter.

What skills do you have to offer constituents that other candidates might not?

Experience in Town Government and a successful track record. We have deep roots in our Town and make every decision based on what is in the long-term best interests of Hampstead while rejecting short-term politically expedient options. We hope the results are obvious. The Bypass is finished and now our Main Street is in the process of being revitalized. The 1935 water main was replaced with a savings in water pumped from our wells of about 40,000 gallons each day – a significant difference since we now pump a daily average of 350,000 gallons. The old Hampstead School on Main Street is now an apartment complex for seniors. The Police Department long ago moved out of a back room in Town Hall into their own building on Main Street after that building was completely rehabbed. Community spirit projects such as the Christmas Village and Military Banner Program are a success. Tax rates are low and the quality of services is high – a first rate Police Department and open roads after snow storms before roads outside of Town are cleared serve as a prime examples. As a result, Hampstead was voted as one of the Best Places to Raise a Family and the Safest Town in Maryland by independent third parties.

What one thing would you most like to see changed?

Having the State’s Main Street Revitalization Project already completed. Seriously, progress is being made in spite of losing over 70 days to weather last year and what you see along the southern end of Main Street will soon be what the rest of the road looks like – a welcome improvement to be enjoyed by all. For the time being we endure a bumpy road as first the underground work of replacing gas lines and installing stormwater management is completed followed by curbs, gutters and sidewalks and finally a smoothly paved road. In the end we will have thoroughly modernized systems below ground with old town charm above ground; resulting in a Main Street of which we can all be proud.

What are your campaign priorities?
  1. Police Department – Years ago we made the decision that our Police Department’s Officer Compensation would match the highest paying agency in the County. We did this to provide a stable career for our Officers and more importantly our Town has benefitted from this stability since the officers know its people and businesses. We also made it a focus to have first rate equipment and training. As a result, the Hampstead Officers of Carroll County’s Fraternal Order Police Lodge #20 have endorsed my candidacy.
  2. Local Business – We will continue to work cooperatively with business owners to help make them more successful and to attract new businesses that match the character of our Town. In the last month uses were approved for Daughters Café and the expansion of Outlaw BBQ Smokehouse on Main Street and Pipe the Side, a new micro-brewery planning to open in the Roberts Field Shopping Center. Businesses provide meaningful jobs to the local economy and are an important part of our Town’s fabric.
  3. Team Work – In order to have the best team possible serving our Town, I am running on a ticket with Jim Roark and Dave Unglesbee. Why? Hampstead has long benefitted from this team approach which has helped us avoid divisive partisan politics. If you have attended our meetings or watched them on TV, there is no fighting or grandstanding and the atmosphere is professional with a genuine respect for each other. I have enjoyed being surrounded by intelligent strong-willed people who have our Town’s best long-term interests at heart and do everything possible to make sure their good ideas are implemented. Running on tickets clearly shows voters who shares the same basic conservative philosophies and ideas for moving Hampstead forward resulting in less time debating and more time getting projects done.
What is your position on the North Carroll High School site and its future uses?

The poorly planned and even worse “public process” in the closing of our High School was a gut punch to everyone who lived through it. For those of you reading this profile from outside the North Carroll area just imagine how you would have felt if it was your high school on the chopping block. Our community came together and fought nobly to keep it open. It was an emotionally trying time for all.


That being said we are working to put the building into productive use. We understand the importance of maintaining the school's structure and the open areas around it for the benefit of our community. We are working with the County to preserve the school and the fields and support of the installation of a turf field on the site. We control the zoning and will be diligent in deciding what uses are allowed on the site in the future. We hope to see the building more efficiently utilized and fully support the use of the property for the Sheriff’s Training Academy.

Jim serves on the Planning & Zoning Commission and you can read his response for a more detailed answer with which I am in total agreement. Since the last recession, a period of over 10 years now, we have seen little to no residential growth. We have planned for limited growth and have the infrastructure in place to support it from schools to roads, water and businesses. The proposed subdivision will take 5+ years to be fully developed and bring much needed housing stock to our Town. We need a mix of housing to keep the people who grew up here, attract younger people from outside of the area, keep those looking for a larger house to raise a family or those looking to downsize so they can stay close to family and friends. You can be sure that any development allowed will be well planned, attractive and add to the charm and character of our Town.