Candidate Survey: Jeff Gahler for Harford County Sheriff
Jeffrey R. Gahler
Office Sought and District
Sheriff – Harford County
Masters of Science – Johns Hopkins University
Sheriff of Harford County/Career Law Enforcement Officer and Commander
Incumbent – Harford County Sheriff
Social Media Accounts
Why are you running for office?
As a career law enforcement officer, I have always worked hard to make a positive difference for our citizens. As Sheriff, our Office has focused our efforts on the worst offenders, enhanced reporting in instances of domestic violence and worked with our county and community partners on issues. We have built strong, sustainable and effective efforts that have reduced crime. I am running in order to continue and to build upon these positive efforts to further enhance public safety during a second term.
Who do you consider your political role model, and why?
What is your favorite book about politics and policy, and why?
The War on Cops by Heather MacDonald – Although more about policing and policy than “politics,” the political impact of the false narrative against our law enforcement officers has had dramatic impact on public safety. Certainly part of the political debate in our nation and in so many communities. MacDonald, a researcher, provides overwhelming and compelling data to discount the misinformed or malice based attacks upon the police profession. A must read for anyone responsible for developing policy on public safety.
What will be your top priority in elected to this position?
My priorities include building upon the great progress we have made over the last four years. This includes continuing to lead the crime fight and the continued successful reduction of crime rates. To also ensure the Office is trusted and valued by the citizens of our County by practicing responsible fiscal management while ensuring our men and women are treated fairly and with respect.
What is the biggest issue facing your county?
The heroin/opioid epidemic has been and remains the biggest public safety issue facing our community and communities across the nation. Many of the initiatives we have started in my first term concerning the opioid epidemic have received local, state and national recognition. These efforts include the HOPE group, working to increase awareness, treatment and educational opportunities, legislative proposals and targeting drug suppliers. We have taken a holistic approach that does not simply look at traditional enforcement efforts to solve the problem.
What is your position on taxes and spending?
As a fiscal conservative, I believe that every tax dollar should be used as efficiently and as responsibly as is absolutely possible.
What is your position on a county tax cap?
What is your position on land use issues?
What is your position on public safety?
No community can prosper without effective and efficient public safety. As a career public safety officer and as the elected Sheriff, I believe there is no greater service that a community can offer. Without safe communities, our schools, neighborhoods and businesses cannot thrive.