Long touts ac­com­plish­ments as he seeks re-elec­tion

The Dundalk Eagle - - EDITORIAL - By NICOLE ROD­MAN nrod­man@ches­pub.com Fol­low me on Twit­ter @NRod­man_Ea­gle

As the end of his first term in the House of Del­e­gates nears, Del. Bob Long (R-6) is tout­ing his ac­com­plish­ments — and work­ing to make the case for a sec­ond term.

Del. Bob Long was born and raised in Bal­ti­more City, reared by a sin­gle mom who, Long noted, “worked hard to put food on the table.”

“I learned at a very young age, you can do any­thing you want to as long as you work,” he said.

Bearing wit­ness to his mother’s strug­gles, he noted, “taught me prin­ci­ples that I still use to­day – com­mon sense and liv­ing within my means.”

Mar­ried at 17, Long quit school to sup­port his fam­ily.

“I drove a truck for a liv­ing,” he said.

He later earned his GED, at­tended col­lege and went on to earn his real es­tate li­cense.

He was a union truck driver and sold real es­tate for many years be­fore mov­ing to real es­tate full time.

Long has been mar­ried for 44 years to his wife, Rose. They have four chil­dren — two bi­o­log­i­cal, he said, and two he helped raise.

Long first got into pol­i­tics, he said, in 2010 after dereg­u­la­tion caused BGE bills to sky­rocket.

“That’s when I started to sit up and take no­tice,” he noted.

That, cou­pled with his dis­sat­is­fac­tion with Gov. O’Mal­ley’s poli­cies, led him to be­come ac­tive in pol­i­tics.

“I just got tired of the taxes — tax and spend,” he said.

Long ran for del­e­gate in 2010, com­ing within 500 votes be­hind third-place fin­isher, then-Del. Sonny Min­nick.

By 2014, he said, with con­cerns over the North Point Govern­ment Cen­ter and the rain tax, among other is­sues, “peo­ple were fed up and had enough.”

Long and his fel­low Repub­li­cans swept the 2014 elec­tions, flip­ping a long­time Demo­cratic district.

For Long, one of his proud­est achieve­ments in his first term as a del­e­gate is the pas­sage of the om­nibus School Safety bill —a wide-reach­ing bill cov­er­ing ac­tive shooter drills in schools, pro­vid­ing men­tal health care and coun­selors and for­ti­fy­ing school build­ings to in­crease se­cu­rity.

“I laid the ground­work for that bill in 2016,” Long claimed.

In his first term, Long also spon­sored or co-spon­sored sev­eral other suc­cess­ful bills, in­clud­ing leg­is­la­tion al­low­ing non-prof­its to re­trieve aban­doned and sunken ves­sels and bi-par­ti­san leg­is­la­tion pre­vent­ing the tax bill sale of a house for a debt of less than $750.

Long also spon­sored leg­is­la­tion to pro­vide tax credits to home­own­ers who in­vest in ren­o­va­tions. While that leg­is­la­tion did pass on the state level, Long said, it has not yet been im­ple­mented by the Bal­ti­more County govern­ment.

If elected to a sec­ond term, he noted plans to keep push­ing for full im­ple­men­ta­tion.

If re-elected, Long plans to tackle sev­eral is­sues head on, in­clud­ing the opi­oid epi­demic.

Not­ing the com­plex­ity of the is­sue — which touches on topics from health care to crime and more — Long is calling for in­creased ed­u­ca­tion of stu­dents at an ear­lier age to “stop them be­fore it starts.”

He is also calling for more fund­ing to­ward stop­ping the epi­demic and harsher manda­tory sen­tences for drug deal­ers.

Long is also fo­cus­ing on manda­tory sen­tences for those con­victed of vi­o­lent crimes.

Look­ing at ed­u­ca­tion, he plans to work to curb bul­ly­ing in schools.

“We spend a lot of money on ed­u­ca­tion but if kids don’t feel safe, they’re not go­ing to get an ed­u­ca­tion,” he said.

He also plans to con­tinue his push to save tax­payer dol­lars, in­clud­ing curb­ing manda­tory spend­ing in the state bud­get.

Long is op­ti­mistic about the de­vel­op­ment at Trade­point At­lantic, though he does hope to see more man­u­fac­tur­ing come in.

He says he is con­tin­u­ing his push for more well-pay­ing jobs in the district and state, work­ing with busi­nesses.

Long sup­ported tax credits on con­struc­tion ma­te­ri­als for Trade­point At­lantic, say­ing that such mea­sures do not cost the tax­payer money and bring tax rev­enue and jobs into the area.

Long touts his work across the aisle, not­ing that he has worked with Democrats to suc­cess­fully push through leg­is­la­tion.

“It doesn’t mat­ter about the party,” he noted, “it mat­ters about do­ing what’s right.”


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