Ocean City Today

Schanno vies for Maryland delegate seat

By Greg Ellison | Jan 25, 2018

(Jan. 26, 2018) Ocean Pines resident Joe Schanno has entered a crowded field of Republicans vying to become State Delegate for District 38C in 2018.

“I view myself as the local in the race,” he said. “It’s going to be hard and I’m looking forward to the challenge.”

Schanno, who graduated from Stephen Decatur High School in 2002 and Salisbury University in 2007, said politics has been a lifelong passion.

“I’ve lived on the Eastern Shore [and] been active in Maryland and local politics since I was about 16,” he said.

After losing the District 38 State Delegate Republican primary in 2010, Schanno worked with Rick Santorum’s unsuccessful 2012 presidential bid and joined the [Larry] Hogan for Governor campaign as Eastern Shore director in August 2014.

Despite losing the 2010 state delegate primary, Schanno said subsequent redistricting, which created the 38C District encompassing northern Worcester County and a portion of eastern Wicomico County, could tilt the race in his favor.

“The way the district is drawn now, this is my stomping grounds,” he said. “That’s the reason I’m running.”

In February 2015, Gov. Hogan appointed Schanno as special assistant to the secretary for the Department of Natural Resources.

“Part of my job is [assisting] the legislative director, so I understand how a bill is made,” he said. “I can understand the alphabet soup of acronyms.”

Since moving to Ocean Pines while in elementary school, Schanno has watched the area steadily expand.

“Worcester County had the same population as Somerset [County] at the time and we have ballooned,” he said. “It’s been interesting to see how the area has grown … I think pretty naturally.”

Attracting younger families and businesses to root on the shore is a top priority for Schanno.

“I want to get rid of unnecessary state-level taxes, to create a better business environment,” he said. “I’m running … to make sure the state allows … the area to thrive.”

Maintaining top-performing schools and providing access to affordable healthcare are also significant issues for Schanno.

“In November, [lets] make sure we have a conservative to help out Gov. Hogan,” he said.

Schanno joins three others challengers for the District 38C Republican nomination, including Jim Shaffer, Ed Tinus, and Ocean City Councilman Wayne Hartman. The primary is June 28.

The filing deadline is Feb. 27, with the general election scheduled for Nov. 6.

To kick off the campaign, Schanno is holding a meet and greet on Feb. 19 at DeNovo’s Trattoria in Ocean Pines from 6-8:30 p.m.

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