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Incumbent Bunting Responds to Criticism in Commissioners Race

6/19/14 | By Josh Davis, Staff Writer

WORCESTER COUNTY– Incumbent Worcester County Commissioner Madison Jim Bunting Jr. is engaged in a heated political battle for the District Six seat with Linda Busick.

Bunting spent six years on the Worcester County board of Zoning Appeals prior to being a commissioner, including a 4-year stint as chairmen. The candidate was also chairman of the Worcester County Planning Commission.

“I’m head and shoulders above my opponent,” Bunting said. “I have over 20 years of owning a surveying and land-planning firm. I’m a professional land surveyor in Maryland and Delaware. I worked on a daily basis with staff in Worcester County. I’m very aware of zoning, and I’m an expert on the comprehensive plan.”

Honesty, integrity and experience have been the slogans to his campaign.

“I think ‘experience’ has been the key to me having this position as Worcester County Commissioner for the last four years,” Bunting said. “I’m concerned about the key issues for Worcester County. Everybody wants to do what we can for our school system; everybody wants to keep our waters clean.”

Bunting supported the feasibility study to discuss a Showell elementary school expansion. The candidate also labeled economic development as the cornerstone of his campaign.

“We have a big revenue problem as far as our tax base,” he said. “In 2007 Worcester County was worth over $20 billion for the tax base. Now that number is $15 billion. In 2007 the County Commissioners could fund anything and everything, which I think was poor planning for the future.”

Bunting urged fiscal restraint going forward. He also dispelled the notion that he blocked an environmental initiative earlier this year. Busick accused the commissioner of stalling a Maryland Coastal Bays initiative to plant trees in an athletic complex.

“That land is a county park,” said Bunting. “It’s owned by the taxpayers of Worcester County (and) that specific piece of land has been used as an alternate field for practice. I was very concerned about taking that cleared piece of land away and planting trees on it because – due to conservation laws – once you plant trees you lose the land, and I did not want to take that away from the public.”

Bunting believes his record speaks for itself.

“We’re doing good things,” he said. “We’re finally getting some economic development, and that’s what we need to increase our revenues and increase our tax base.”

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