Friday, February 22, 2013

Mark Smith for Lieutenant Governor

Democratic Bradford County Commissioner Mark Smith Running for Lt. Governor

Towanda, PA - Second-term Bradford County Commissioner Mark Smith will seek the 2014 Democratic nomination for Lieutenant Governor. He announced his candidacy at The Weigh Station Cafe in downtown Towanda this afternoon.

In his remarks, Smith said, “I will take Pennsylvania and the office of Lt. Governor in a new direction. It’s time to re-write the job description of the Lt. Governor so it meets the needs of the people and Pennsylvania's future. The next Lt. Governor must be more than just a placeholder. As Lt. Governor I will work relentlessly as a public advocate to give a voice to those people and communities that are all too often left behind by the bureaucracy in Harrisburg.” 

A full copy of his remarks as-prepared is available at:

From 2008 to 2011, Mark Smith served as Chairman of the Bradford County Board of Commissioners, overseeing enormous economic development and job growth, while leading important government modernization and reform initiatives. He was only the second Democrat ever to be elected Chairman.

Under Smith’s watch, Bradford county's private sector employment increased by 15%, while statewide and national employment decreased by 2% and 4%, respectively. During those years, Bradford County had the second-best employment growth in the state. As Bradford County became the number one county in the state for Marcellus Shale development, Smith became a recognized expert on the state, regional and local impacts of the natural gas industry.

He has been an outspoken critic of the Corbett administration and Department of Environmental Protection's failures to properly engage with county and local leaders on the oversight and regulation of the natural gas industry.

He was a strong supporter of a tax on natural gas, which was needed revenue for communities across the shale region to meet the increased demands from growth.

While serving as Commissioner, Smith cut taxes, passed four balanced budgets, refinanced the county's debt and revamped the county's energy usage and efficiency policies, saving taxpayers millions of dollars.

Before entering public service, Smith was an industrial design engineer. He grew up in Ridgebury Township in Bradford County and studied industrial design at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh and then at the College for Creative Studies in Detroit, Michigan. He is also continuing his education working toward a business degree. Smith is an accomplished musician who plays lead guitar in the rock band, One Floor Away. The band is currently signed with the studio New Vine Media where they are recording their first album.

Smith looks forward to a spirited campaign, but more importantly, he is looking forward to his June wedding when he will marry his fiancé, Wilkes-Barre native, Jane Clements.

1 comment:

Scott Cannon said...

Mark says he will tough on gas yet he is marrying the regional spokesperson for Chesapeake Energy. I can't think of a more blatant conflict of interest.