Candidates for the Virginia House of Delegates were asked the following questions by The Washington Post:
Issue: What do you believe is the most important statewide issue the 1983 General Assembly will confront?
Budget: What is your opinion of the Robb administration's budget cuts? Would you cut some programs more deeply and restore funds to others?
Problem: What Northern Virginia problem is most in need of legislative attention?
Floyd C. Bagley (D), Incumbent, 60, of 18316 Possum Point Rd., Dumfries, an attorney, has been a delegate for seven years. He is a member of the House Appropriations Committee. He has 20 years service as a Marine Corps officer and also has been county attorney in Prince William. He currently has a private law practice.
Issue: Money! My constituents favor a one cent increase in the state sales tax in order to fund critical state programs, according to my own poll.
Budget: We on the Appropriations Committee are looking for new sources of revenue. Gov. Robb's 5 percent across-the-board budget cut hurts programs already sliced thin when we appropriated for the budget. Our cuts were necessary because of the shortfall in revenue collection caused by a longer-than-projected recession. Restoration of 5 percent cuts by exemption of Gov. Robb prevents cuts in essential programs.
Problem: A larger share than 22 percent return on revenue exported to Richmond (about one-third of the total state income is derived from our area), as well as transportation (our commuter problem). We must also address the need for jobs and compensation for the unemployed.
J. A. (Jack) Rollison III (R), 32, of 15500 Blackburn Rd., Woodbridge, is president of a family business. He has been an aide to Del. Harry J. Parrish (R-Pr. William) and an officer in the county Republican Party. He has been director of the county Chamber of Commerce, chairman of the county Private Industry Council and is active in other community groups.
Issue: Economic problems are paramount, including the interrelations between interest rates, inflation and unemployment. The challenge is to continue downward pressure on interest and inflation rates while lowering unemployment and keeping the lid on income taxes. In Virginia and other states, Job Club programs administered by Private Industry Councils (PICs) under CETA have been highly effective in finding jobs for the unemployed. In Prince William County, the PIC Job Club has achieved a 70 percent placement rate at a cost of $370 per placement. The General Assembly should: 1) strengthen and encourage Private Industry Councils statewide; 2) establish Job Club programs throughout the state; 3) require able-bodied individuals receiving unemployment or welfare compensation to participate in Job Club programs; 4) establish job training programs through PICs with local community colleges and high schools; 5) expand funding for on-the-job training by local businesses, and 6) create special tax incentives for businesses hiring unemployed youth. These programs are necessary to avert bankruptcy of the state's unemployment compensation fund.
Budget: Due to shortfalls in estimated revenue in both general and non-general fund items, a 5 percent across-the-board reduction has been instituted by Gov. Robb. I believe that this solution is too simplistic. It is the duty of the General Assembly to prioritize spending in the Commonwealth, and the governor should not take this power away. We need to increase spending in those areas that produce either an increase in revenue or a decreased demand for services. Examples of funding increases would be for job training, business relocation into Virginia, encouragement of tourism and expansion of training programs in the community colleges. We could cut programs that are not contributing to economic recovery and make sure that all user fees for state services are equal to the actual costs of those services.
Problem: Hundreds of millions of dollars have been wasted in Northern Virginia for "gold plated" sewer treatment plants designed to meet environmental standards which are not scientifically justified. Household and business sewer bills are exorbitant because the treatment plants are much too expensive to operate. Both treatment standards and plant design are controlled by the state Water Control Board, which has been aware of existing problems for at least five years, but has refused to act. Legislative action is required to set cost-effective treatment standards and prevent future sewer rate increases.