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October 9, 2018

"D" is for Disaster Part 2

Jason Miller

Like clockwork, Stephan Jones who is president of Frederick County Career Firefighters Union Local #3666, posted this to his Facebook account October 1st. "On November 6th, vote FOR on Question D and make sure that your local firefighters have a voice to make sure someone shows up to your emergency."

 

Scary Language!! In this case, it is meant to offer an “either-or-choice” to Frederick County voters. Zero sum choices seldom are.

 

"Oh no! If I don't vote the way they want me, too, nobody will be there for me when I need help!"

 

Don't be fooled by those who would fool you on this matter.

 

This is a carefully crafted illusion of a false premise. Senior union officials get trained on how to push their respective legislative agendas by very expensive, and very experienced, hired lobbyists. In this case, the tactical statement hints that if you don't vote for this "Question D," odds are no one will save your house when it catches fire. It's your fault that you suffered.

 

This implied claim is completely, totally, and utterly false. At present, firefighters have the same collective bargaining rights as the Frederick County Teachers Association. The firefighters have a voice in their destiny already. No union gets everything they want in collective bargaining. It would not be a negotiation if that were the case.

 

To say that our county charter needs a binding arbitration amendment for a Montgomery County wish list of equipment, salaries, and benefits is laughable. Frederick County has a smaller tax base from which to pull. Montgomery County has a big pie. It also has huge taxes to pay for the pie.

 

The only solution to solve the current issues in fire and rescue is to elect officials who understand that progress takes time, and who are able to come to the table in good faith and cast the hard vote – make the tough decision.

 

In the fight for fiscal discipline at the local level, a steely resolve is needed. Unions will pull on your heartstrings this election year in hopes that you'll forget about the strings attached to your purse when it comes time to pay your taxes.

 

A “YES” vote for "Question D" has nothing to do with public safety. If passed, this Charter Amendment will likely lower the county's bond rating over time, raise county taxes in the short term, and shackle Frederick County residents with finality to a fiscally back-breaking and economically bone crushing debt in the event of another great recession.

 

History shows us that we can still support our firefighters and rescue personnel and vote “NO” on "Question D."

 



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