by Lisa Tome
Campaigning hasn't really begun yet but Allen Johnson has already spent $135,000 in his quest to be Elkton's mayor.
A year ago in May, Johnson bought a home in Elkton and moved to the town from Newark, Delaware.
He wanted to be certain he met residency requirements to run for the mayoral post.
He is a graduate of North East High School and the Harford County Sheriff's Office police academy.
He also attended Del Tech and Cecil College and has taken numerous hours of police training.
He started working for Elkton Police Department in 1994. In 1999, because he wanted to work in computer crimes, Johnson began working for New Castle County Police. He returned to Elkton Police in 2003. He is currently a midline supervisor and corporal with the department. He served in the Maryland Army National Guard from 1989-99. He is also the Maryland Chief's Association Medal of Honor recipient for 2010.
He is also the owner of two businesses, with his wife, Danielle. In 2006, he started The Butler Did It cleaning service. That commercial cleaning business employs three people.
He also owns Key Lime Taxi which he started in late 2011. He has 11 cabs and employs 15 people.
"I'm a problem solver. I like to look at something to see if I can make it better," he said. He began studying the taxi business after a friend paid what he feels was an exorbitant rate to take a cab after her car broke down.
"I said to my wife, I think we can do this better with economy vehicles...I do my due diligence. I check things out," he said.
Starting the taxi business pushed Johnson to run for office. He feels that the town could handle things differently for business owners.
"That opened my eyes on how difficult it is to open a business in Elkton," he said.
"I plan to take my business experience and apply it to the town," said Johnson. He explained that when he started the cleaning business, he went and cleaned the offices himself. That way he knew how long it took the job to be done. He hopes to apply that to town tasks such as grass cutting. "Are we being responsible and getting it done in a timely manner?," questions Johnson.
Johnson said he filed for mayor in February. He believed that the incumbent mayor, Joe Fisona, wouldn't be running.
"I'm already a public servant. I can help one person at a time. If I was mayor, I could help the whole town. I can lead it in a better direction. I'm so scared of succeeding. If I win, I don't want to let anyone down," he said.
His goals are to reduce the budget through process improvement and fiscal responsibility. He wants improved economic development to encourage businesses. He wants to fill empty businesses by reaching out to companies. He'd like to see a water park built along the I-95 corridor.
He wants enhanced public safety and a Calea-accredited police department. And would like a paramedic working with each squad at EPD.
He also has ideas on how to solve Elkton's flooding, homelessness, and drug problems. He is suggesting possibly a small hydroelectric dam to curb the flooding problem. He wants the homelessness problem studied and procedures that have been successful elsewhere used in Elkton. He said Elkton's Street Crime Unit is doing an excellent job keeping drugs out of town.
The Elkton town election will be held on May 27 at the Elkton Town hall in the mayor and commissioners room.
Last day to register to vote is April 25.
As of last week, incumbent Mayor Joe Fisona and Johnson have filed for mayor. Incumbent commissioners Charles Hicks and Mary Jo Jablonski have filed. They are being challenged by DJ Van Reenen. Candidate filing deadline is May 6.