I Will Bring Vision and Experience to the Job
By Dwight Patel Candidate for State Senate, District 20
As the Republican running in District 20 for State Senate this year, I can assure you that I have the problem-solving expertise and the persistence to address the concerns of this district. I’ve taken the Americans for Tax Reform “No New Taxes Pledge.” I went to Montgomery Blair High School in downtown Silver Spring. I know Silver Spring and the citizens of LD 20. Many of them would welcome the opportunity to create a more business-friendly environment in our community.
I currently serve as 1st Vice Chair of the MCGOP Central Committee, and have managed several congressional, senate and gubernatorial races outside Maryland. I have been endorsed by Gov. Bob Ehrlich, Del. Neil Parrott, and the Maryland Federation of College Republicans.
My positions on the issues you care about are as follows:
Transportation – We need more roads and should look at all possible transportation solutions. If I need to go into the city I use Metro. However, mass transit isn’t a silver bullet that will fix our transportation woes. I support the governor’s plans to widen the Beltway, I-270 and the Baltimore Washington Parkway.
I also believe that we should extend Metro to BWI Airport, since all world class cities have light rail to airports. I realize that the MARC train goes to BWI, but it isn’t convenient. I strongly oppose BRT on Route 29, Rockville Pike and the Damascus area, because we don’t fix traffic issues by taking away a car lane and giving it to a BRT car. Right now, we see Ride-On buses that go through our neighborhoods virtually empty.
Education – Like transportation, we need to investigate all the workable possibilities. We need to offer more options, especially to kids in under-performing county schools. We need charter schools and vouchers. A zip code shouldn’t be a death sentence to a student sitting in a failing school. And I believe we should also set up a dual track approach for our kids.
Since not all kids will be attending college, we should look at setting up technical schools where kids can learn IT, or a skilled trade, much like the Edison Center. In fact, we need to add more schools like Edison, which will focus on IT, health care services and carpentry, HVAC and the plumbing trade. We need to have an Edison Center-type school for up-county as well. The city of Philadelphia has developed partnerships with various charter schools to accomplish these goals.
We need to also have more math and science magnet schools. Since we have some of the brightest minds in the country in Montgomery County public schools, we need to challenge these kids and get them ready for the rapidly evolving high-tech economy. Again, we can learn from our friends in Philadelphia, where they have developed charter schools that prepare kids for careers in Engineering, Architecture and Computer Science. Once more, nothing should be off the table. We shouldn’t reject an idea out of hand just because a Republican thought of it.
Taxes and Regulations – We need to cut taxes on Marylanders, who pay too much in taxes compared to our neighbors. We also must lower the sales tax back to 5%. We lose too many Maryland families to other states because of our oppressive taxes.
We also need to deregulate in Maryland to make it easier for people to start businesses. We should set up more tech incubators and create more enterprise zones in Maryland, such as those that were championed by the late Jack Kemp.
For more information on my campaign, please visit my website at PatelforMaryland.com.