1. QUALIFICATIONS: How does your background prepare you for the duties of this office?
In addition to having served on the Takoma City Council for two terms, I’ve been an active community leader, successful local businessperson, and a bridge between business and government. As a member of the Green Party, I’m not beholden to either of the two major parties, which makes it possible for me to consider a broader range of solutions.
2. ECONOMY: How should the county government best encourage economic development and job growth at all economic levels?
Create a green economy. Start with the new general plan (Thrive Montgomery 2050) and work to attract electric car and solar companies, promote solar panels, increase self-generation, switch to electric, cut and tax carbon and plastic, examine 'plastic to oil' technology, strive for zero-emissions, compost and recycle EVERYTHING, and make the most of the Agricultural Reserve to provide local food.
3. TRANSPORTATION: What are your highest and lowest priorities for transportation in Montgomery County and why?
Back to the new general plan: Get us out of our cars and bring local services and businesses near to where we live. Follow up these general goals with specifics, that include a full commitment to public transportation and an equally full commitment to reducing car traffic.
4. HOUSING: What action, if any, should county government take to increase the supply of affordable low and middle income housing throughout the county?
Relax and reshape strict zoning codes to allow homeowners themselves to increase local density and create more places to live. Re-imagine single-family exclusionary zoning. Also, let's promote development of some of the huge paved and underused spaces for affordable housing, offices, and small businesses to bring us closer to where we work.
5. POLICING: What steps, if any, would you take to enable and enhance responsible effective policing?
This question implies a different question: how to create a sense of community in our scattered county? My experience on the Takoma Park City Council taught me that people are willing to sit down and talk through issues or problems. In Takoma Park I would talk directly to the Chief. Officers would come to neighborhood gatherings. I have ideas about how to transform County police practices.
6. CLIMATE CHANGE: What steps would you propose to cut greenhouse gas emissions and prepare for the impact of climate change?
See my answers to questions 2, 3 and 4. Meeting these goals will require us to push ourselves WAY outside of the box.
7. PUBLIC HEALTH: What are the most significant health care issues and disparities facing Montgomery County and how will you address them?
I live in Long Branch, down-county, where the County has under-spent and under-invested for decades. This is where disparities in health care, racial treatment, housing and income are most prevalent. We can create a model for other parts of the county by reviewing, enhancing and refining solutions to these issues that have been started here, and comparing those solutions with other efforts.
8. PRIORITIES: What are your top three priorities?
The thing that most bugs me is that this is a one-party political environment. As examples, no non-Democrat has been elected to an at-large Council seat for over 50 years, and more than forty percent of the voters in the county are disenfranchised because the Democrat primary dictates who will serve. Resolving this will be hard, but it can be done.
©2022 Friends of Dan Robinson, Sally Ann Rieger, Treasurer