Mr. Hosfelt’s background includes service in the U.S. Air Force as a security policeman between 1980 and 1987. He also served with the Air Force Reserve prior to being hired by the City of Dover in 1988 as a police officer. He was promoted to chief of police in 2010. He retired in 2014 after 26 years of service.
He is a graduate of Delaware Technical Community College and the FBI National Academy. He is currently Dover city councilman.
Q: Why are you running for this office?
“It’s about service, service to our community. This is what I know — it is what I like to do and this is how I was raised. It started with the U.S. Air Force, continued with the Dover Police Department and continues with my service on City Council. This is what our family knows best. My wife is a school teacher, our daughter is a nurse and our son serves our country with the U.S. Air Force. I see this as a great opportunity to continue serving, just to a larger constituent base.”
Q: In your campaign thus far, what seems to be the most pressing concerns to the constituents of the 2nd District?
“The majority of the voters are concerned with the State of Delaware’s budget deficit and what impact it will have on their county taxes. Most are frustrated that we find ourselves in this position with an estimated $350 million shortfall. Rather than the state taking responsibility for its deficit, most of us anticipate they will push some of the responsibility onto the counties. Presently, Kent County residents should be anticipating anywhere from a $2.2 million to a $3.1 million shortfall at the county level because of the position the state is in and what they may force upon us. The state is preparing to remove the 30/70 split it has with the counties to support the paramedic program and this equates to about $1.5 million. The state creates the law (T-16, Chapter 98, Paramedic Services) which includes the 30/70 split along with the mandatory requirements to be met, but yet is prepared to push their responsibility onto the county governments.
“The county’s share of the real estate transfer tax is also still in question. With the state possibly reducing the county’s share from 1.5 to 1 percent, this would create an additional cost of about $1.6 million to taxpayers living in Kent County. After speaking with various directors in county government and attending the current budget hearings, it appears to me that our tax dollars are used appropriately. The county has managed its revenues and expenses and is able to balance its budget without tax increases.
“Also, there is a concern about public safety no matter where we live in the second district. The state and the county are overrun with illegal drugs, especially heroin. As a community, we then fall victim to the other crimes such as theft, burglary and robbery committed by those addicted to drugs and willing to do whatever it takes to get them.
“And lastly, our farmers have spoken to me about the impact of regulations and fees that take a toll on our farming and poultry industries. While agriculture is one of the top industries in Kent County, many in the business find it difficult to work their way through an exhaustive permitting process. One local farm family spoke at length about the cost and difficulty in working with the state and county while trying to work their way through all of the regulations.”
Q: What important skills from your background will you bring to the Levy Court?
“I pride myself on my work ethic, the ability to work with others and my management experience. No matter what positions I have held with the military, the Dover Police Department and now with Dover International Speedway there has been a simple philosophy when it comes to work: show up, work hard while you are there and treat others as you would like to be treated.
“I choose to treat others with respect even when we disagree and I believe this will serve me well as a Levy Court Commissioner. I understand the concept of doing more with less and did so as Chief of Police during the recent recession. In that capacity, I managed a multi-million dollar budget under constant scrutiny and reduced crime across the board throughout all areas of the city. In my current role as a city councilman, I am well versed in the complexities of a $138 million dollar municipal budget and the need to work within the confines of the budget.
“A commissioner has to be responsible to the residents they represent; they need to be available and willing to help when necessary. A commissioner also has to develop professional relationships with staff and other members of the court to help find common ground and solutions that will ultimately present themselves during the coming years. I have this experience.”
Q: What are the personal or professional accomplishments of which you are most proud?
“Personally, I am most proud of my family. Simply put, my wife Sherry is my best friend and we have been married for 34 years. We have raised two incredible children who I know will go on to do great things in life.
“Professionally, I am proud to be called a veteran most of all. I believe service to our country is one of the most honorable things a person can do.
“As a police officer, I was recognized as the NRA’s Law Enforcement Officer of the Year and was able to attend and graduate from the FBI’s National Academy.
“In 2015, I ran for City Council and once elected, I was appointed Chairman of the Safety Advisory and Transportation Committee, a position I still hold today. Presently, I work for Dover International Speedway as their Director of Public Safety and Track Operations, and this year I was honored to receive NASCAR’s Security Director’s Award.”
Q: What issues facing Kent County need the attention of the Levy Court and how do you intend to deal with them?
“First, continuing to balance the county budget without impacting county taxpayers will be my priority. As a county commissioner I will make tough but decisive decisions and move forward serving the best interest of the county residents.
“Next, the aging infrastructure; Kent County has approximately 400 miles of wastewater transmission lines and 95 pump stations and some of this infrastructure is nearly 50 years old with no asset management plan in place. The Public Works Department is developing a ‘pipeline condition assessment’ program and as commissioners, we need to encourage and support initiatives like this so we can prevent major failures in the future. The recent break to a main transmission line which resulted in several hundred thousand gallons of wastewater spilling into the St. Jones River is a perfect example of the problems that can occur with aging infrastructure if not maintained properly.
“As important as the issues above, job creation is a must as Kent County continues to fall behind New Castle and Sussex in job growth. Initially, we need to retain the jobs we have, work to expand the businesses creating the jobs and develop new strategies aimed at job creation. County government has to ensure the Economic Development Office has the tools necessary to develop a proactive approach to job creation.”