What do you consider the greatest accomplishments and failings of the Glassman administration?
Gibson: I like to look at what a person has accomplished instead of failings. Nothing is accomplished when you can’t work together. Mr. Glassman has done well with funding for Education and the Sheriffs Office. Would have liked to have seen Economic Development back in Belair alongside permits. That would make sense to me, being able to aid development in the permitting process.
Does Harford County have adequate resources to meet its needs, particularly in the funding of public schools and law enforcement?
Gibson: I think we have to find a way to increase resources and streamline existing resources to meet our future needs. Our schools and our children are Harford’s future. The Harford Sheriffs Office will have to grow and modernize to meet our future needs. I still believe we will need a helicopter in the future for crime prevention, especially in our rural areas. After we sold “Eagle One” we waited over an hour for a State Police or Baltimore County helicopter to assist the Sheriff.
Have the county’s land use policies adequately balanced growth and the preservation of existing communities and agricultural land?
Gibson: I think as a Council we need to revisit Eminent Domain Rights. Harford County Citizens rights have been eroding lately. I would also like to do away with the new 3 minute speaking rule. The Council is the peoples place to voice their concerns, especially with land use and zoning laws. We also need equitable enforcement of land use policies. This has been a major problem.
How do you rate the county’s efforts to fight opioid addiction overdoses? What else, if anything, should the county be doing to combat the epidemic?
Gibson: I rate the County and Sheriffs Office AAA+ on the Opioid fight, it has hit Harford extremely hard. I personally think we should plan more treatment and programs for the addict. We need to treat all Harford Citizens as human beings and with respect. As such, we all need and have a duty to get involved.
How would you characterize the relationship between the Harford County Sheriff’s Office and the communities it serves? Are any reforms necessary?
Gibson: While the Harford County Sheriffs Office has a good relationship with the communities it serves, I think it could be better. The Sheriffs could do a better job of stopping and getting to know the community, this would aid also in information. Also would like more transparency in the reporting of crime. The prior administration had more reports in The Aegis and responded to community concerns much better. When better informed, you have the information necessary to inform police and keep your community safe.
The Glassman administration is trying to lead Harford County’s formerly all-volunteer fire and emergency medical services to more a professional organization with more paid personnel. How do you rate the county’s effort and what should have or could have done differently in this controversial transformation?
Gibson: I think as the county grows we will need a Professional Organization. As with any change it takes time and effort. We must include our volunteers for their knowledge and commitment. All Parties must be kind and work together for Harford’s common good. This is not always easy, but can be achieved.