As a parent of three recent graduates of Winters Mill High School, I am grateful for the wonderful educational system here in Carroll. All three of my children attended Carroll County Public Schools from kindergarten through 12th grade.

District 3 has two candidates running for the office of county commissioner. One is a teacher who has stated that he will continue to be employed and teach in the Carroll County Public School System even if he wins the commissioner race. This concerns me. Dennis Frazier has also stated that he has cleared this with the ethics board and that no conflict of interest exists.

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While the ethics board for the school system may not see an issue with a school system employee also being a county commissioner, the Carroll County Ethics Commission has not ruled on the matter. It will not do so until after the election and if Frazier were to win.

Based on precedent, however, it seems very likely that the commission would rule that a person cannot be both a county commissioner, responsible for deciding the school system's budget, and an employee of the very same school system.

If Frazier is required to step down as commissioner in order to continue teaching, it is my understanding that the Carroll County Republican Central Committee would select a replacement. No second election, thereby silencing the voice of the electorate.

Luckily, voters have a choice. Maria Warburton is a worthy option to Frazier. A review of her website shows that she is well versed and experienced in the issues facing the county. She and her husband have been very involved in the community for many years, including volunteering with scouting, youth sports and the school system.

I know Warburton as a fellow East Middle School and Winters Mill High School parent. I know that she would do what is right for the school system, both for the students and its employees. While not an educator, she knows the concerns they have and the issues they face.

Warburton has also stated that she will leave her current employment upon being sworn in as commissioner, removing any doubt of a conflict of interest. I urge voters of District 3 to cast their vote for Warburton.

Kathy Lowe

Westminster

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