Repub­li­can Gin­der an­nounces run for coun­cil seat

Cecil Whig - - LOCAL - Bkro­ner@ches­pub.com

ELKTON — Gor­don Ed Gin­der, an Elkton Repub­li­can with ex­pe­ri­ence work­ing in lo­cal govern­ment, has an­nounced his can­di­dacy for the Ce­cil County Coun­cil’s sec­ond coun­cil­manic dis­trict, which rep­re­sents the Elkton area.

The an­nounce­ment makes Gin­der the sec­ond can­di­date in the race to re­place Coun­cil Pres­i­dent Joyce Bowls­bey, who has said she will not seek re-elec­tion. Cody Kirk, a 24-year-old Demo­crat, de­clared his can­di­dacy sev­eral months ago. Nei­ther can­di­date cur­rently faces a chal­lenger in the pri­mary elec­tion.

Cur­rently, Gin­der serves as vice chair of Elkton’s Plan­ning Com­mis­sion, an ap­pointed body that helps guide the town’s fu­ture growth and de­vel­op­ment. Prior to that po­si­tion, he held sev­eral po­si­tions in govern­ment, in­clud­ing as town ad­min­is­tra­tor for Ch­e­sa­peake City.

From 1988 to 1990, Gin­der served as a town com­mis­sioner in Elkton.

In 2016, he served as trea­surer for Coun­cil­man Bob Mef­fley’s cam­paign.

Gin­der has also served as vice pres­i­dent of the board for the YMCA of Ce­cil County and pres­i­dent of the board for Haven House, an out­pa­tient sub­stance abuse cen­ter in Elkton.

“I think it’s given me a lot of ex­pe­ri­ence that I can carry for­ward to the job of a county coun­cilper­son,” Gin­der said. “I have an idea of what is needed, what has to be done, and what’s al­ready in place that needs to be en­forced.”

Over­all, Gin­der said he likes the di­rec­tion that Ce­cil County is go­ing un­der County Ex­ec­u­tive Alan McCarthy, but he said he’ll keep vot­ers’ opin­ions in mind as he makes de­ci­sions, should he be elected.

“I’m go­ing to lis­ten to peo­ple and lis­ten to their con­cerns and what they want,” Gin­der said. “I’m a good lis­tener, and I think the vot­ers need to be in­volved.”

He said he couldn’t prom­ise to stop a tax in­crease, but he said he’d look for cuts when faced with a tough bud­get.

“The old say­ing is, ‘ You don’t sad­dle up a horse un­less you plan on rid­ing it,’” Gin­der said. “I’m not go­ing to make promises.”

Gin­der said, if pressed to find cuts, he would look at the work­force needs of each depart­ment to find where cuts could be made.

“No­body likes to lose a job, but it’s part of the busi­ness as­pect,” he said.

On the lo­cal econ­omy, Gin­der said he likes the county’s progress with grow­ing the blue col­lar job base, but he wants to see more pro­fes­sional jobs in the county for young, col­lege-ed­u­cated res­i­dents.

“We’re mov­ing for­ward as far as get­ting jobs with cor­po­rates,” Gin­der said. “We need to at­tract the cor­po­rate side that of­fers a higher pay­ing wage so that we can re­tain the young adults who are born and raised here that go on to col­lege and get a de­gree. We need to re­tain them and keep them here.”

On the is­sue of con­cen­trated an­i­mal feed­ing op­er­a­tions (CAFOs), Gin­der said he wanted to find mid­dle ground, but noted he is a sup­porter of prop­erty rights.

“There has to be a happy medium,” Gin­der said, not­ing that farm­ing is one of the county’s lead­ing in­dus­tries. “Farm­ing is a mat­ter of right. I was born and raised in Lan­caster County, Pa., and all my un­cles owned farms, so I know what farm­ing is about. I worked on my un­cles’ farms and I know what they have to put up with. You should have the right to use your prop­erty the way you want to in farm­ing.”

As far as McCarthy’s sewer man­date, Gin­der said “it’s good that we’re look­ing at that,” and that there should be more sewer ex­ten­sions near wa­ter­ways, to pre­vent pol­lu­tion of wa­ter­ways. How­ever, he said the cost of the man­date needs to be con­sid­ered more closely.

“When it was first in­tro­duced, I don’t think they were look­ing at the back end,” Gin­der said. “It’s gonna cost to have it hooked up from the main lat­eral into the house. Who’s go­ing to pay for that? That’s not cheap.”

Like other politi­cians, Gin­der em­pha­sized the need to ad­dress the opi­oid epi­demic. His goal, he said, is to fo­cus on fol­low­ing up with those in re­cov­ery to con­tinue to of­fer coun­sel­ing and re­sources.

“Af­ter so many days, 30 days, they’re re­leased and there’s no fol­low up,” Gin­der said. “You’re talk­ing an ex­tended amount of time they need to be in re­hab, and 30 days doesn’t do a whole lot.”

Gin­der pro­posed to have a “czar” of sorts to co­or­di­nate ser­vices, in­clud­ing hous­ing and treat­ment, for those in re­cov­ery.

Cit­ing his re­sume, he said he thought his ex­pe­ri­ences would make him a good choice for vot­ers.

“I’ve al­ways been in­volved, with the town and also with the county,” Gin­der said, not­ing that he’s served on boards and with civic or­ga­ni­za­tions, in ad­di­tion to his govern­ment ex­pe­ri­ence. “I think I have a lot to of­fer the county, and that’s why I’m run­ning. I have a pas­sion for Ce­cil County, and I love Ce­cil County.”

“I’m ready to roll up my sleeves and get to work,” Gin­der said, “but that needs to be de­cided by the vot­ers.”

In the 2014 elec­tion, Bowls­bey, a Repub­li­can, was elected with 69 per­cent of the vote. Repub­li­cans out­num­ber Democrats in Ce­cil County 27,500 to 22,400, giv­ing Gin­der an ad­van­tage.

How­ever, he said he’s learned not to un­der­es­ti­mate op­po­nents.

“I wel­come lenge,” he said.

Fol­low me on­line at Face­book. com/ brad­kro­nernews and Twit­ter.com/brad­kro­ner the chal-

CE­CIL WHIG PHOTO BY BRAD KRONER

Repub­li­can Ed Gin­der, of Elkton, is run­ning for the Ce­cil County Coun­cil’s sec­ond dis­trict seat.

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