Photo of the candidate courtesy Danielle Meitiv
Why are you running for County Council?
Three years ago, my children were detained by the police for walking home without an adult. My husband and I were harassed and charged with child neglect. I fought back because no one should feel powerless when dealing with our local government and no innocent family should suffer the way we were made to. I needed leaders who would listen and care about what was happening, but no one did. I am going to be the change I needed then. I will listen and I will care.
What are your qualifications for the position?
As a scientist, I’m comfortable tackling complex problems, looking at the data, and making decisions based on facts. Science also provides a model for transparency in decision-making and including many different people and perspectives. As the “free-range mom,” I stood up to the county bureaucracy and changed policies to help all families.
I’m a strong advocate for women and helped found Jews United for Justice, a group dedicated to racial and economic justice in the D.C. region. I fought to ban fracking in Maryland, divest Montgomery County from fossil fuels, and pass a climate emergency resolution. I’ve represented District 20 on the Montgomery County Democratic Central Committee. I will stand up for all working families and residents of our county.
Are you using public financing, yes or no? If yes, have you qualified for matching funds?
YES. I am proud to participate in the county’s new Public Election Financing Program and have qualified for matching funds.
What specific policies and/or programs would you propose to expand the county’s tax base?
To increase the tax base, we must create more jobs here in the county. Montgomery County is primarily a small-business economy and most new jobs will come from expanding or retaining those operations.
To create an environment that allows businesses to start, grow, and thrive, we must invest in infrastructure: transit, to move people and services, and education, to prepare graduates for high-skill, high-wage jobs. Higher impact fees on high-density developments can help the county pay for this, while a public bank could provide revenue for the county while helping start-ups access capital.
Streamlining and simplifying the permitting process would also help new businesses get off the ground. Expanded vocational training and apprenticeships can help residents enter high-wage jobs in the trades.
I’m an average voter, interested in doing my civic duty but not an avid follower of county politics. Convince me that I should vote for you over all the other candidates.
As a scientist and a mom, it’s important to me that our government policies make sense. That county decisions are based on facts, not politics, and reflect the needs and concerns of our residents. That’s why I’m running for County Council at-large.
I stood up for my family, and as your council member, I will stand up for you and yours. I will fight for policies that help working families, not harm them. I’ll fight for transparency about how rules are made and where our tax dollars go. I will make sure our local government works for the people it serves, not against us.
Danielle Meitiv is a climate scientist and trained oceanographer that has worked for NOAA, the Environmental Defense Fund, and as an independently contracted scientist researching ocean acidification and the impacts of air quality on climate change. She is known as the “free range mom” for standing up for her family and making the county change its policies when her children were detained by police for walking home from the park by themselves. She and her husband have lived in Silver Spring since 2007 with her father, her two kids, and Gizmo, the rescue dog.