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Mohler Voted In as Baltimore County Executive

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John Lee
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The Baltimore County Council Thursday voted unanimously to make Don Mohler the 13th county executive. Mohler will finish the term of Kevin Kamenetz, who died two weeks ago.

 

 

 

Mohler served as Kamenetz’s chief of staff and before that was County Executive Jim Smith’s communications director. In addressing the Council after the vote, Mohler said the last two weeks had been incredibly difficult for the county, with the loss both of Kamenetz and police officer Amy Caprio, who was killed in the line of duty on Monday. Mohler said it’s time to heal.

 

Mohler said, “So I would say to you that my goal is in the next five months, we’re going to be ok.”

 

Mohler was a bipartisan choice. Council members, Republican and Democrat alike, praised Mohler for his experience, his ability to solve problems, and for keeping politics out of decision making. The major candidates who currently are running for county executive also back the choice, including Republicans Al Redmer and Delegate Pat McDonough.

 

The County Charter states that a replacement executive has to be from the same party as his or her predecessor. Kamenetz was a Democrat.

 

Democratic Councilwoman Vicki Almond, who also is running for county executive, addressed Mohler before the vote.

 

“And I trust Mister Mohler that you will be open and transparent with us and all of those who need to deal with you as county executive,” Almond said.

 

Speaking to reporters after the vote, Mohler promised to be just that.

 

“One thing I’ll look to do is to bring folks together to talk about issues and see if we can come to consensus,” Mohler said.

 

Mohler, technically, is not yet county executive. He has not yet been sworn in. And after the council vote there was some confusion about how many county executives there have been. The confusion was over whether to count Frederick Dewberry, who was named Acting County Executive in 1974. The final decision by the county historian and county attorney is that Dewberry counts, so Mohler will be the 13th Baltimore County Executive. 

 

Mohler will complete Kamenetz’s term, which ends December 3. Council members saw Mohler as the best choice to see Kamenetz’s vision for the county through. 

 

Mohler said the business of government will go on. The trash will be picked up and the pot holes filled.

 

 

 

John Lee is a reporter for WYPR covering Baltimore County.
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