All candidates were asked:
Major objective: Name one objective, or piece of legislation, you would seek if elected.
Equal Rights Amendment: Is it realistic to expect the Virginia House to approve the Equal Rights Amendment? Do you support its passage. Why or why not?
Local funding: The Reagan administration budget cuts wil be felt in Virginia in the coming year, forcing some state and local governments to curtail some activities. Should the state provide funds or taxing sources to local government to make up for these cuts?
James F. Almand, 32, of 2615 N. Roosevelt St., Arlington, is seeking a third term in the House of Delegates. Almand, an attorney, serves on the House Courts of Justice, General Laws, and Militia and Police committees. He is a lifelong Arlington resident and is a former assistant commonwealth's attorney in Arlington.
Major objective: One of my main objectives if reelected is to continue my fight to preserve affordable housing in Arlington so that our community will not be one in which only its wealthy can afford to live. We need a mix of rentals, condos and single-family homes for teachers, police, firefighters, laborers, singles, young married couples, senior citizens and others on fixed incomes. I look forward to the opportunity to continue my efforts to meet this challenge.
Equal Rights Amendments: Hopefully, changes as a result of this fall's election will improve the chances of ERA in the House. I have long supported ratification; I have been a copatron; I have lobbied other legislators on its behalf; I have attended rallies in Washington and Richmond to show my support. I favor this amendment because it establishes in our Constitution a fundamental principle of fairness which is best expressed in the simple words of the amendment itself: "Equality of rights under the law shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex."
Local funding: The state should provide funds to the maximum extent possible by better managing its programs and by eliminating agencies which duplicate others. Because the need in Virginia is so great to improve education, mental health and prisons, much of the state's revenue must go to meet these needs. I have always advocated additional sources of finding for localities to raise needed revenue and to help relieve the pressure on the real property tax, which is the major source of local revenue.
Elise B. Heinz, 46, of 2728 N. Filmore St., Arlington, has been a member of the House of Delegates since 1978. Heinz graduated cum laude from Harvard University in 1961 and is an attorney.
Major objective: If reelected, I will reintroduce my 1981 bill to clamp down on illegal sales of handguns in Virginia. It failed in committee, but is gathering support from urban areas throughout the state, and will eventually pass.
Equal Rights Amendment: It is not realistic to expect ERA to get through the House, but neither is it unrealistic to think it might get through. The fate of ERA in Virginia depends largely on the results of this year's elections. I support ERA as a matter of simple justice -- government should not be allowed to define people's legal rights in terms of their gender.
Local funding: This question cannot be answered sensibly until we know what the budget cuts are and what programs are threatened. There are certainly some programs that have had federal funding that must be continued, even if it takes new money from in-state sources to keep them going. Some others would never be missed.
Mary A. Marshall, 2256 N. Wakefield, Arlington, is an incumbent delegate from Arlington. Marshall is a former economist with the antitrust division of the U.S. Justice Department. She has authored legislation in the fields of health, mental health, the environment, education and small business.
Major objective: Laws assuring the dignity and economic protection of the homemaker, equal economic and educational opportunity for women, ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment, divorce laws which will prevent divorced fathers from leaving their children for the taxpayers to support.
Equal Rights Amendment: Passage of the Equal Rights Amendment will require a change in the composition of the Senate, which is not up for election this year, and a change in the House leadership where the Speaker, who makes all committee appointments, is opposed to ERA, as is the new chairman of the Privileges and Elections Committee, which handles ERA.
Local funding: Increased flexibility in the use of federal funds will enable us to provide more services for less money, but this economic advantage of streamlined procedures is not enough to make up for all the budget cuts. Reallocation of state funds will help some. Localities need increased tax flexibility so that they will not have to rely on the property tax. Among the most serious losses will be the reduction in home services provided to the elderly, and the physically and mentally handicapped.
Warren G. Stambaugh, 37, of 807 N. Irving St., Arlington, has been a member of the House of Delegates since 1974. He serves on the Finance; Labor and Commerce; and Health, Welfare and Institutions commitees. He is chairman of the Health Subcommittee.
Major objective: My primary goal will be repeal of the sales tax on food. The House passed a partial repeal last year after a study commission, which I chaired, showed that repeal would not severely harm state revenues. This is a longtime goal and I believe it is near to being reality.
Equal Rights Amendment: I support the ERA and have cosponsored its passage since I have been a member of the House. The premise that all people should be equal before the law regardless of sex is so basic that I can see no logical reason why ERA should not be a part of the Constitution. Given the make-up of the Privileges and Elections Committee and the opposition of the Speaker, however, its chance of passage in Virginia is slim.
Local funding: If we are willing to examine carefully the entire budget and not just those areas in which cuts were made by the federal government, we may be able to adequately fund essential state and local services without changing the tax structure. If education, health or other vital services cannot at least be maintained at their present levels, I would be willing to explore changes in the tax laws.