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Letters: Don’t live in Westminster? Don’t tell us how to vote; Supporting Becker for Westminster mayor | READER COMMENTARY

Editor’s Note: Municipal elections in Carroll County will be held from May 3 through May 18. The Times will publish one letter to the editor per writer endorsing candidates, as space allows, up until one week before that municipality’s election.

Don’t live in Westminster? Don’t tell us how to vote

After reading the April 26 Carroll County Times, I feel compelled to write this letter. I am referring to Chris Tomlinson’s column and Haven Shoemaker’s letter to the editor.

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First Tomlinson spends his whole column on the Westminster election. He does not live in Westminster, but he wants to tell us how to vote. I would like to think the voters of Westminster can make up their own minds. I know we are intelligent enough to weigh the pros and cons of the candidates running for election and make a choice. After all, whoever gets elected in Westminster will affect us, the citizens of Westminster for the next four years, not someone living in Hampstead. Shoemaker does the same thing, but he wants to tell the citizens of Taneytown and Westminster how to vote. Let the people who live in these towns decide for themselves. Visit the Community Media Center’s website and check out the forum for your town if you want additional information.

Second, the local elections are nonpartisan elections. To me that means, let’s look at the candidates running for office and decide who is the best person for the job, regardless of party affiliation. Unfortunately, the Carroll County Republican Central Committee doesn’t seem to want that to happen. At a time when this country is so divided, we don’t need this group trying to divide the county as well. Let’s keep the local elections nonpartisan. The CCRCC did the same thing with the Board of Education races in the past and we all see how that has worked.

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I will endorse three candidates running for office in Westminster, where I live. Mona Becker for mayor and Dan Hoff and Tony Chiavacci for common council. As district 3 commissioner and a former council member I believe these three candidates are our best choices. They are also people I have worked with in the past as commissioner for the betterment of the city and the county.

Dennis Frazier, Westminster

The author represents District 3 on the Board of County Commissioners.

Supporting Becker for Westminster mayor

Over the weekend, I watched the mayoral forum for Westminster. I respect anyone with the courage to run for office but there was one thing I could not get over. Who is Dennis Dillon?

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I am a lifelong Carroll County resident and have been in business myself for almost 11 years. My company has a strong philosophy of giving back to the community. Yet, throughout all the time I have spent volunteering and attending events, I have never once bumped into Dillon.

I understand that Dillon is the VP of a larger company but many businesses in Westminster such as mine do not operate at that level. Running a small business in Carroll County is very different from running a larger corporation in DC.

Dillon stated that there is an absence of McDaniel students on Main Street. COVID-19 has a lot to do with that.

Westminster small businesses have and continue to work with both McDaniel and Carroll Community College. Not only do we offer incentives for college students to shop local. We also help provide them with internships and learning experiences.

Dillon had little to say during the forum about local nonprofits and organizations like “Together We Own It” and “Rise Above..” Both organizations have been fundamental in helping our community.

Dillon also had little to say about the opioid crisis. This has been an ongoing issue in Westminster since before I graduated from Westminster High School. It is complex and takes more than sitting down with law enforcement to understand it. You also need to talk to those in active addiction and long-term recovery. Approaching a problem from one perspective without having the entire picture can easily end with bad decisions. This is not just a crime-related issue. It is a public health issue as well.

As far as “taking loans” during COVID. At 3.5%, it was a smart business move for us. Again, look at the big picture.

This election, I support Mona Becker for mayor of Westminster. Mona and I speak often. She is always open to listening to my conservative approach to issues. I appreciate that.

Zach Tomlin, Hampstead

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