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Unaffiliated candidate on ballot for 169th district

David Weissman
505-5431/@DispatchDavid
  • Hanover council member Robert Marcoccio will be on ballot for for 169th district House seat.
  • Marcoccio, unaffiliated, will challenge incumbent GOP Rep. Kate Klunk.

GOP Rep. Kate Klunk officially has a challenger on the ballot for her 169th district House seat, but it's not a Democrat or a Libertarian or a Green.

Robert Marcoccio, unaffiliated candidate for the 169th House seat.

Hanover Borough Councilman Robert Marcoccio, who will run without any party affiliation, recently obtained the necessary signatures to be placed on the ballot in November.

Marcoccio said he decided to run because lawmakers from both parties have failed to adequately look into his plan to move school funding away from property taxes and toward extraction-based royalties that the state already receives.

"I want to take the politics out of the appropriation of school funding," he said.

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Marcoccio said he previously attempted to run for Congress against U.S. Sen. Scott Perry in 2012 but didn't get enough signatures.

Education funding is the one issue he said he would focus on during his first two-year term, if elected, but he added that removing gerrymandering, which refers to the practice of politicians altering districts to keep a political party in control, would be a focus if he continued to serve.

The 169th district, which includes all or parts of Codorus Township, Glen Rock, Hanover, Heidelberg Township, Jefferson, Manheim Township, New Freedom, Penn Township, Railroad, Shrewsbury Township and West Manheim Township, is heavily Republican, Marcoccio admitted, but he likes his chances.

"I think the school issue gets a big response," he said. "Knocking on doors to get these signatures, a lot of people liked what I had to say."

The district was moved from Philadelphia to York County after 2014, and Klunk has served as the representative since that point.

Klunk did not respond to a request for comment.

Marcoccio said he will also fight to support small business, while the state seems to be supporting major corporations, pointing to a recent announcement by Gov. Tom Wolf's office of a $22.25 million incentive package for Amazon.

Experts: Amazon didn't need Pa.'s $22M incentive package

"If they sent that money out to small businesses and sole proprietors, it would generate (way more jobs)," he said. "The way they're doing things is like trying to build a house from the chimney down."

— Reach David Weissman at dweissman@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @DispatchDavid.