Opinion from a Clerk of the Circuit Court candidate

Hollywood, MD - The following was recently submitted to Opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of management.

To the Editor:

I am a candidate for Clerk of the Circuit Court. I recently participated in a candidate’s forum at the Lexington Park Library on May 21, 2018..
Apparently, I made some comments, which I feel compelled to clarify, as some feedback I have received would suggest.  In my comments, I referred to my inability to obtain information on specific business procedures of the Clerk’s Office.  When the local office could not fulfill my request, I made the request to the Administrative Office of the Courts in Annapolis.  They responded with a specific Maryland Rule which supports this lack of transparency and the local office was correct in not cooperating with my inquiry.  Also brought to my attention was that it is generally felt that the “elected” Clerks throughout the state supported this lack of transparency.
I want to be perfectly clear, at no time during my remarks were any of them directed to or in reference to the current hard working and dedicated staff in the Clerk’s Office.  This office has been without an elected Clerk of the Court since 2017.   I commend the current staff for their tireless effort and diligence.
It is unfortunate that I did not express this clear enough at the forum and apologize for any lack of clarity.  If elected, I look forward to working with this group of professional staff.

Pete Cucinotta
Candidate for Clerk of the Circuit Court for St. Mary’s County

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