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.
Zach Tomlin will seek to unseat Chris Nevin as Hampstead mayor. Here are Tomlin’s responses.
Zach (Kibler) Tomlin is a County Man. His family has lived in Carroll County for four generations. He comes from a family of blue-collar business owners. His father is a general contractor, his grandfather, great grandfather, uncles and many of his cousins own excavating companies while many of his aunts worked in public service. He has currently resided in Hampstead for two years with his two children.
In May of 2010, at age 26, Zach formed Tomlin Technology. Through hard work, consistent studying, unwavering persistence, natural troubleshooting ability, negotiation and his ability to lead, Tomlin Technology has experienced nine years of continued growth. The company has also received a variety of accolades for their business practices and community involvement. Giving back to the community in which you live and serve is one of Zach’s core values.
Zach’s background, knowledge, skillset and experience aligns perfectly with the issues that Hampstead currently faces.
Through Tomlin Technology, Zach and his team have helped numerous multi-million dollar companies and organizations become more efficient by aligning their business practices with technology. His area of expertise involves the design, implementation, maintenance and security of network infrastructure.
As a certified and practicing Cybersecurity consultant, Zach understands the core principals of crime prevention, mitigation and public safety. It is common for Zach to work with various law enforcement agencies during the course of his work. —
Ever since moving to Hampstead, Zach has been a strong voice for the residents of the community. After listening his neighbors in Robert’s Field complain about the HOA’s Board of Directors he decided to run and won by an overwhelming majority. Within his first year in office, Zach, along with his fellow board members were able to complete most of his agenda.
— Changed Management Companies
— Drastically Reduced Overhead While Improving the Services
— Provides Internships and Mentoring to Students of Carroll Community College and McDaniel College
— Has been a guest speaker and presenter for multiple organizations: Carroll Community College, McDaniel College, Kiwanis Club, MAGIC, Department of Social Services
Why do you want to serve in this role?
If you go out and start talking to the residents of Hampstead, you will quickly realize that they have some amazing ideas. What they do not have is a voice. There is no direct line of communication to our current elected officials. It is 2019. There are multiple ways to engage the community outside of official meetings. I want to give the residents of Hampstead a voice and input into what goes on within our Town. I have no long-term political ambitions. I enjoy helping people. I also possess the ability to identify, troubleshoot and resolve issues. When you combine that with my experience as a small business owner and IT consultant for numerous organizations I believe that I am the right person for the job.
How do you plan to represent your municipality’s interest in the county government?
I do that now. I have a good rapport with the current County Commissioners and County staff. The same is true with members of the current Board of Education. We may not always agree but there is a level of mutual respect that goes a long way. If I am elected Mayor, I look forward to working with them on a more formal level. Hampstead isolates itself from the rest of the County and that is not in our best interest. The County wants to see us succeed. They are not our enemy. This has been the current line of thinking and it is time to bring that to an end.
Name something that you would begin working to accomplish as soon as soon as your first week on the job.
My first week on the job would involve sitting down with as many members of the Town’s administration staff, public works employees and police officers as I can. I would ask them what their job entails, what they believe is working and what they feel needs to be improved. After gathering that information, I would work with them to create a plan of action that would create more efficiency.
As an IT Consultant I get paid to help align an organization’s business practices with modern technology. One of my mantras is “Start with what you know” and building efficient infrastructure within an organization is something I know how to execute very well.
What skills do you have to offer constituents that other candidates may not?
I am a technologist, cybersecurity professional and small business owner. I know how to effectively implement technology and crime prevention tactics. I also know how to build a business from the ground up. I am experienced in every aspect of business from Marketing to Research and Development.
It is one thing to understand numbers, but it is another thing entirely to understand why those numbers are what they are.
What is one thing that you would like to see changed?
I want the residents of Hampstead to have a Mayor that is approachable. A Mayor that they can contact through email, social media or by picking up the phone and calling. When I started working on my campaign I ensured that the methods of communication that I setup as a candidate can be used if I am elected.
I do not have all the answers and I am most certainly not always right. What I do have is an open mind, the ability to compromise, and sincere empathy for others. I also have no problem with admitting when I am wrong. I strongly believe that arrogance is a character trait that has no place within leadership.
What are your campaign priorities?
Giving the residents of Hampstead and even those just outside of the Town limits a voice.
Working with the County with regards to the grounds of North Carroll High School
Establishing detailed 5 and 10 year targets for our Town. I would like to focus on economic growth through small business and not by adding hundreds of town homes on small parcels of land.
I would first like to say that if I am elected Mayor I would have no formal say in what happens to North Carroll High School. In this situation I would be playing more of a diplomatic role with the County. Which I look forward to.
North Carroll High, New Windsor Middle and Charles Carroll Elementary schools were closed at the end of the 2015-2016 school year, but in 2018, the Board of County Commissioners determined the fates of two of the buildings and debated what’s next for another.
The school is closed. There is no economically feasible way to reopen it and anyone that tells you differently is not being truthful.
I believe that building a community center and comprehensive sports complex on the grounds of North Carroll High School is a no-brainer. I understand that it is an ambitious task with many moving parts, but it makes sense economically and would benefit the entire County. It would attract people from outside of the County in the form of athletic tournaments and in turn would naturally help revitalize Main Street.
We shouldn’t reinvent the wheel. We should go work with other counties that have successfully established public/private partnerships to make this happen. We will see ROI and that money can be reinvested in our Town or other areas of the County.
I think the rezoning of that property was a travesty. The Town attempted to put on a façade by hosting the mandatory Planning and Zoning meetings along with the monthly Mayor and Town Council meetings. They wanted to make it look like they cared about the wishes of those they represent but I was there. I saw first hand how packed every one of those meetings were. I heard resident after resident voice concerns and flat out tell the Mayor and Town Council that they did not want this to go through. The end-result was a 4-1 vote against their constituents.
There were way too many red flags associated with the rezoning. The Town performed no risk assessment and put the trust of our Town into the hands of a developer that will simply make their money, move on and leave our children with the negative consequences.
Contaminated ground, traffic concerns and quite a bit of uncertainty surrounding our current school situation will combine to make this a perfect storm.