House of Delegates candidates were asked the following questions by The Washington Post:
Spending: Governor Robb has announced a 5 percent across-the-board cut in state spending. Do you think that is needed and fair? If not, where would you cut state spending?
Taxes: Virginia generally is regarded as a low-to-moderate tax state. Are you happy with the way taxes are levied in the state? What changes would you favor in state and local taxes?
Legislation: Local governments must secure state legislation for most of their functions. What specific legislation would you introduce for your area? Stephen E. Gordy (R), 62, of 3708 Prado Place, Fairfax, is retired. He was an Army officer and a teacher and principal in Loudoun County. He belongs to the Fairfax County Republican Committee, is past president of the Mantua Citizens Association and works with handicapped adults in the county's rehabilitation program.
Spending: If a 5 percent cut is necessay to balance the budget, I would support it. However, prior to voting I would examine closely the budgets of all activities of the state to ascertain if some sectors could take a large cut and thus reduce the cuts in such areas as Medicare, child support, education and transportation.
Taxes: I would make the following changes: 1) repeal sales tax on food and non-prescription drugs; 2) a state constitutional amendment to limit increases in the assessed value of an owner-occupied residence to 10 percent of any one year; 3) indexing state income tax to protect taxpayers from the automatic "bracket creep" caused by inflation; and 4) a state constitutional amendment to limit growth in state spending to the rate of growth of our state's economy.
Legislation: 1) Local option on electing or appointing a school board. 2) Voter right to initiate and repeal laws by referendum. 3) Funds to continue the development of a balanced transportation system in Northern Virginia to include the Dulles toll road, the Tyson's bypass, the Route 50/Gallows Road interchange and Metro completion. 4) Give counties and cities more control over housing authorities. 5) Give counties and cities more control of apartment/condo conversions. John H. Rust, Jr. (R), (Incumbent), 35, of 2940 Miller Heights Rd., Oakton, an attorney, has been a member of the House since 1980. He is on the Counties, Cities and Towns and Courts of Justice committees, and he also has served on several state commissions and on the boards of community service programs.
Spending: Governors Holton, Godwin and Dalton maintained a tight hold on state spending. As a result, the Virginia budget is "lean"; however, I have yet to see a government budget that couldn't stand trimming. The 5 percent cut across-the-board is commendable, but I would rather see the budget reviewed on an item-by-item basis and all but essential services reduced or eliminated.
Taxes: We must move promptly to repeal the repressive tax on food and non-prescription drugs. These taxes, especially the food tax, have a tremendous impact on necessities that are outside the control of the everyday taxpayer. Alternative sources of revenue can be found. It is time the General Assembly responded to overwhelming opposition by our citizens to this deplorable tax.
Legislation: I do not believe the General Assembly should dictate the laws of purely local concern. As I have in the past, I will consult with the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors and the Fairfax City Council to determine what legislation is needed for the orderly transaction of local governmental business. During my first two terms, I sponsored many bills for our localities in the House of Delegates. Since I began carrying these local bills, Fairfax County and Fairfax City have enoyed more legislative successes than at any time during the past decade.