Maisano seeking 9th District Senate vacancy

Recently-retired Magisterial District Judge Dan Maisano has announced his candidacy as a Democrat for Pennsylvania’s Ninth Senatorial District, representing Chester and Delaware counties, according to a press release.


Dan Maisano

The seat was vacated by State Sen. Dominic Pileggi, who won a judgeship on the Delaware County Court of Common Pleas in November. A special election to fill the remainder of Pileggi’s term will coincide with the April 26 primary, the release said.

Maisano said he had to retire from his magisterial district judgeship before announcing his candidacy. His last day as a judge was Sunday, Jan. 3, he said.

Maisano cited the need for action on property tax elimination, a fair and equitable school funding formula, and a reasonable natural gas severance tax, as some of the main reasons why he is entering the race.

“I am running because of what is happening – or should I say not happening – in Harrisburg right now – the failure to address rising property taxes, to properly fund public education, and to force gas drillers to pay their fair share,” he said in the release. “Furthermore, the legislature’s failure to pass a comprehensive budget on time brought vital social services, nonprofit organizations and schools to the brink of closure. Meanwhile, seniors living on fixed incomes are struggling to stay in their homes due to skyrocketing property taxes. This has to stop.”

Maisano added that property-tax reform or elimination does not have to come at the expense of a strong system of public education. He is a strong supporter of a school funding formula that fairly distributes education dollars with an emphasis on the poorest districts, such as the City of Chester.

An attorney for more than 36 years and a magisterial district judge for more than two decades, Maisano lived and worked in Delaware County prior to moving to Chester County in 1989. Having lived and worked in both counties has given him an appreciation of the needs and priorities of both, making him an ideal candidate to represent the interests of Delaware and Chester County.

“I didn’t grow up in the privileged class. I am the son of a single mother who supported our family by waiting tables and tending bar,” said Maisano. “She instilled in me a strong work ethic, and the drive to be the first in our family to go to college. Her example and that dream inspired me to put myself through college, then law school, and later to become a judge.”

Maisano said that he would work to implement a fair severance tax on natural gas extraction, and support legislation to promote, protect, and preserve the state’s open spaces.

“Pennsylvania is the only major gas-producing state that does not have a severance tax,” he said in the release. “Meanwhile, we have a unique heritage and environmental ethic that is deeply tied to agriculture, equestrian pursuits, and clean streams and forests. We cannot afford to jeopardize our natural resources because they also belong to future generations."

Maisano said he plans to bring the skills he honed on the bench – impartiality, open-mindedness and the ability to listen – to the state legislature.

“As a judge, my first job was to be informed, to treat people with respect, to listen to everyone and to trust my experience. I think our politicians should do the same,” he said in the release. “As your senator, I will work to build consensus and to represent you with integrity, openness and bipartisanship.”

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