By Bryan Simonaire
Senator, District 31
Opportunities are readily available for those who seek them in America. That is also true for Anne Arundel County. For someone who came as a newbie to politics with only a desire to restore the voice of the people in Annapolis, I am honored again to represent the people of Pasadena.
I never imagined I would end up in politics, as I came from relatively humble beginnings and cared little for public speaking. However, in our county, all things are possible with the will to work hard, a passion to find solutions and a desire to serve our fellow residents.
First, let me say thank you for your confidence in me. I always think of my position as one of public service, and please know that I have an open-door policy to everyone independent of your views, party affiliation or anything else. My goal is to make our community better.
With that being said and the elections over, the General Assembly has opened its door again in 2019. Many issues need our immediate attention, and it is time to get back to the business of the people.
We will deal with budget issues that range from the large price-tag of the Kirwan Commission on education to money needed to restore the bay to the financial remedy for the state workers drug prescription program.
Additionally, we will continue to work on the opioid issue that is ravaging our county, state and country. No single solution will fix this growing problem, but we must continue to work to reduce this epidemic. This issue knows no boundaries and it affects every demographic.
We will continue to work on a nonpartisan solution to the disrespectful and disgraceful political drawing of maps for Congress and local representation. The highest court in the land will hear the appeal from Attorney General Brian Frosh. Personally, I am not sure why he did not allow the corrective action needed, but he chose to appeal the ruling that Maryland’s maps were unconstitutionally drawn.
Another issue facing my committee and Senate will be the rapid decline of the oyster population despite numerous attempts to revitalize their numbers in the bay. This complex issue has many moving parts, interests and variables. As our district is basically surrounded by water, it is especially important to me that we continue to improve the quality of our waterways.
In the Senate alone, there will be nearly 1,000 bills introduced that will attempt to change Maryland law. Some will be mundane bills that are primarily corrective in nature, but there will be other bills to move us in one direction or another. It is my intention to listen intently to the hearings to understand if these initiatives help or hinder our community and state. Based on the hearings and input from readers like you, I will vote accordingly.
It should be noted that some bills also repeal existing bad laws. So for those who say, “Don’t pass any more laws, because we do not want any more government in our lives,” please realize it takes new legislation just to repeal a bad law.
My personal view is that there will be some good legislation that improves our lives and there will be some bad legislation that would create more burdens in our lives. My goal is to distinguish between the two and vote accordingly.
Also, I will lead the effort on legislation dealing with helping our military and veterans, improving our election system, improving the lives of children and a few other areas of need. However, that discussion will have to wait until another Pasadena Voice edition.
If I can be of any assistance, contact me at Bryan.Simonaire@senate.state.md.us or call my office at 410-841-3658.