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LETTER: Gahler Outlines Traffic Concerns

Jeffrey Gahler has announced his 2014 candidacy for Harford County sheriff.

Jeffrey Gahler, a Republican who in 2010, submitted a letter to local media criticizing the current sheriff's handling of traffic issues in the county.

Gahler contends Bane has not done enough to address the serious traffic problems in the county.

Here is the unedited letter in its entirety:

HARFORD COUNTY FATAL ACCIDENTS

Recently, I announced my candidacy for the Office of Sheriff in 2014.  Many reasons have led to this decision and over the course of the next two years it will become obvious that the current Sheriff has failed to maintain the level of commitment and integrity to remain in office.  Sheriff Bane has held strong a course of conduct that includes political posturing and self serving law enforcement leadership. I believe our families and communities come first, without exception.

A couple of months ago, I thought it necessary to highlight inaccurate information being conveyed by Sheriff Bane in an apparent effort to scare Harford County citizens into supporting a larger staff and significantly increased budget for his office without demonstrating such need based on measurable data driven demands for law enforcement services.  Police to citizen ratios, even if accurately presented, are not accepted by national police organizations as an effective measure of law enforcement needs and should not have been presented without crime, collision and 911-based data (the whole story) by Sheriff Bane as a justification of need.

Today, I am troubled as I read and listen to Sheriff Bane announce the effort he has finally decided to make concerning the rate at which people are being seriously injured and killed on Harford County roadways.  Troubled:

  • that the current Sheriff failed to take notice and act on this issue during his first term. 
  • that when in 2008 I made the rate of fatal accidents and highway safety a focal point of my 2010 campaign platform, the current Sheriff failed to take any action. 
  • that after numerous community forums and the distribution of nearly 100,000 pieces of campaign materials identifying this issue on my platform for a safer Harford County, the Sheriff failed to act and the deaths and serious injuries on our roadways continued at alarming rates. 
  • that it took this initiative proposed not by the Sheriff, Harford County’s chief law enforcement officer, but rather by the local State Police Commander for the Sheriff to finally take notice.

It is understood that not all harm to our families and friends can be averted, but I would rather stand before you knowing that more were saved by well crafted and relentless efforts than were lost due to inaction or delayed effort or attention.  In a recent news story, Sheriff Bane indicates that the fatality rate is “increasing in dramatic proportions to the point that it's time Harford County looks at this issue as seriously as it looks at crime" (Aegis. June 21, 2012).  The regrettable facts are that this is an issue that always deserved the same serious level of attention from law enforcement and that Sheriff Bane is nearly four years late in this realization and response.  I applaud the local state police commander for his leadership and vision that brought the formation of this Task Force and hope these efforts result in accident reductions and lives saved.

Any loss of life is tragic.  These lost tragically in traffic accidents are brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers, husbands and wives and sadly, our children. Many of these deaths could have been prevented or avoided.  Law enforcement is duty bound to act quickly, responsibly and relentlessly to protect the community.  An issue recognized is an issue half addressed.  Sheriff Bane had the issue of serious injury and fatal collisions occurring in Harford County clearly pointed out to him and yet he failed to act timely or aggressively in our best interest. 

Sincerely,

Jeffrey R. Gahler

2014 Republican Candidate for Sheriff

cml July 03, 2012 at 05:34 PM
It's about not addressing the crime. Take your head out of Bane's nether regions for a bit, and you may see it.
Philip Einhorn July 03, 2012 at 06:11 PM
Hi Ed, I will not be Uncle Sam tomorrow.
1ke July 03, 2012 at 08:14 PM
You see what happens when law enforcement is a political plum? Ooops, I'll run into trouble on the bypass talking like that!
Ahmad0001 December 18, 2012 at 05:29 AM
Sheriff Bane still needed several years to think about it and then needed another state trooper to lead the way. http://www.onlinedatastoragesite.com/softwares/the-3-stage-converter-may-be-the-perfect-answer-for-solitary-phase-problems.html
Philip Einhorn December 18, 2012 at 06:56 PM
As you drive on the roads in Harford County watch how many people are texting while driving, talking on a hand held cell phone, cutting in and out of traffic at a high rate of speed and reading a book while driving. Our roads are not wide enough to handle the volume of traffic especially on routes 24, Mountain road and Churchville road during rush hours. Without adequate staff there are not enough deputies and state police officers to handle the volume of traffic. There is a hiring freeze on county employees. The Sheriff can only use the assets that he has. Another problem we have is the number of accidents that are caused by our youth who drive at high rates of speed especially at night and early ;morning. We have lost too many young people who have been killed by high speed accidents and drug use.. This has to be addressed by the schools when these children are starting to learn to drive. I believe that a program is in effect at the schools. Perhaps that program needs to be enhanced. The parents of our young people who are driving could help by teaching their children good driving habits and leading by example when their children are in their car. At any rate our Sheriff and his deputies are doing a great job with the assets that they have to work with.

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