June 2, 2014 7:49 pm ET
Stay informed and vote
(Note: This was published as written by the candidate.)
Meet Democrat Harry(H.B.) Bhandari running for Delegate in the 8th District:
Having been born in Nepal, I made the difficult choice to leave my home and pursue the American Dream by becoming a United States citizen. I started out in this country as a gas station cashier and restaurant server. I attended Johns Hopkins University to continue my education and am now serving as a teacher in the public school and community college systems. Additionally, I founded and am President of the nonprofit “Global Educational Cultural Literary Support Association” (www.GECLSA.com). Currently, I am an officer with the Linover Community Association and was appointed to the Baltimore County Government’s Pedestrian and Bicycle Advisory Committee. Furthermore, I am the National Secretary of the Young Democrats of America’s Minority Caucus, and I am the vice-president of the Baltimore County Young Democrats. Finally, and most importantly, I am a husband and father of two.
The United States, and the state of Maryland in particular, has offered me tremendous opportunities, and I believe now is the time for me to repay the debt by serving the people of my community as a Maryland State Delegate. There are a number of issues that need to be addressed in our state; among them are education and job creation; the latter of which starts with a solid education, beginning in the classroom with excellent schools. Out of our district’s 122,000, over 3 thousand people over the age of 21 have less than 9th grade education. Moreover,fifty thousand of our district’s populations do not have any have any higher education. As a lifelong educator advocating for children, I support investments in early childhood education, smaller class sizes, and lowering college tuition, because kids who get an early start on learning do better throughout their school careers. Our high school graduates must be college and career ready, so we must ensure that they possess the skills they will need beyond the high school classroom. It is time that we have policy makers who have experience in education making policy for education.
Within our district there are nearly 5,000 people who are unemployed. The areas with the highest levels of employment, 28%, are Health Care, Education and Social Services. Improving education will better prepare our future employees and keep jobs in our district. Moreover, I support the minimum wage increase in Maryland, because of the one quarter of industry in our district that is working in public service. According to the Economic Policy Institute, the incremental increase to $10.10/hour will inject approximately $456 million dollars into our state economy. People who make more can spend more, and drive economic growth.
Higher wages means more opportunity for things like home ownership. Our district currently has almost 3,500 vacant homes. These empty units are going without care or maintenance, which leads to the devaluation of property within our community. If we drive up employment and earnings we can increase the opportunities for people to purchase homes. More information on our district facts can be found at my official campaign website – district facts: http://goo.gl/txVPCP.
20 % of our district’s population is over the age of 60. Seniors have worked hard their entire lives and have paid into the system. The government is supposed to work for the people, not the other way around. Entitlement is a word that gets a negative reputation, but those who have worked for their benefits like Social Security and Medicare are entitled to them. They have earned it.
Veterans, who have answered the call to serve a purpose higher than them, deserve not only our gratitude and respect, but our service as well. Earlier this year, the Baltimore Sun reported that Baltimore’s VA office is the worst in the nation for processing disability claims. Our veterans have paved the way for and protected our Freedoms, and it is time they had a government that protects them, with leaders who have fresh ideas and will take thoughtful action to ensure that we are honoring our obligations to these brave men and women.
We can no longer ignore the problems we have in this state, and we can no longer wait to find solutions to these problems. As your state delegate, I will undertake practical actions to improve the lives of my fellow Marylanders, and to help bring Maryland into the national foreground as a state leading others to a better America. For more information on my positions, or to get involved and let your voice be heard, visit my website: http://www.harryforstatedelegate.com/