ELLICOTT CITY, Md. (WJZ) — More evidence that election day is bringing drastic changes in Maryland. The next Howard County executive says he will kill the county’s controversial ban on sugary drinks just as soon as he gets into office.

Christie Ileto talks to the newly elected leader, who says government needs to step back.

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A hot button issue on the campaign trail is a first order of business for Allan Kittleman.

The county executive-elect is killing Howard County’s controversial ban on sugary drinks and high calorie snacks, sending a message that the government is taking a much needed step back.

“My issue more is an issue of personal responsibility and one that the government shouldn’t be dictating,” said Kittleman.

Right now, the ban restricts sugary drinks sold on county property to 40 calories or less and prepackaged food to 200 calories or less per portion. It’s an effort aimed at fighting childhood obesity.

“We all have the same goal in mind. We all want people to eat nutritiously. I think a parent should be making that choice for their child, not this government,” said Kittleman.

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The food and drink ban went into effect in 2012. It was praised by many parents and even those in the medical community. But some residents tell WJZ it should have always been a personal choice.

“In the end, parents should determine what their kids have access to,” Kendra Kay said.

“It’s important to not control how we consume them, but maybe educate the public on the positives and negatives of sugary drinks,” Chris Brown said.

Nonprofit Horizon Foundation supported the ban and is now interested in one thing:

“To have a compromise and have a middle ground where we are all interested in the end goal of improving health in kids,” said Nikki Highsmith Vernick, Horizon Foundation.

It’s a goal new leadership says can be met without the government’s hand.

The 2012 ban was an executive order signed by current county executive Ken Ulmanm who ran for lieutenant governor.

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