RON GEORGE

CUMBERLAND — Ron George said he will depend upon his economic experience and knowledge of 40 years to convince voters that he should be the Republican nominee to become the next governor of Maryland.

The state delegate from Anne Arundel County said he announced his candidacy early because once he makes up his mind to do something he gets after it.

On Friday, he stopped at the Cumberland Times-News.

Earlier in the day, there was a campaign stop in Frederick, and the evening would be spent in Oakland.

“We have to stop governing on a one-size-fits-all basis,” George said. “Baltimore City is not like Allegany County, whether talking schools or crime. Residents of Cumberland shouldn’t be paying a gas tax to improve the Red Line and Purple Line,” he said, referring to urban public transportation.

George said he would work to repeal the increase in the gasoline tax implemented during this past General Assembly.

George points out that his voting record matches those of the senator and delegates who represent the state’s two most western counties.

In the Statehouse, George serves on the Ways and Means Committee, Election Law Subcommittee, Education Subcommittee, Transportation Subcommittee, Veterans’ Caucus, Sportsmen’s Caucus, The Commission on Campaign Finance Reform and the Waterways Workgroup.

George owns a successful jewelry business with stores in Annapolis and Severna Park. “I can see the Statehouse from my Annapolis store,” he said.

“Our support is growing, especially from the business community,” George said. “I will bring manufacturing back to Allegany County and to the Eastern Shore. Look at the manufacturing being brought in to South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia. We can do that here by reducing business taxes. Maryland is the most regulated state in the country for businesses. That has to change.”

George said government has to get out of the way of business.

George, who has a psychology degree from Syracuse University, said he believes his experience counseling runaways in New York City prepared him well to deal with the social problems of Maryland’s inner cities.

“I see a problem, I immediately begin to look for a solution,” he said.

Maryland’s average cost of $13,900 to educate a student for one year is above the national average of $9,400, according to George. He proposes offering scholarships to students who choose to attend private schools. The difference between the scholarship amount and $13,900 would be used to increase teacher salaries. Smaller class sizes would result as well, he believes.

The primary election will take place in June 2014.

Contact Michael A. Sawyers at msawyers@times-news.com.

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