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 statwide 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?
Kenneth R. Plum (D), Incumbent 40, of 2308 November La., Reston is seeking his third term as a delegate. In the House, he serves on the Corporation, Insurance and Banking, the Conservation and Natural Resources and the Nominations and Confirmations committees. Plum is director of adult education for Fairfax County Schools.
Issue: The most important issue facing the General Assembly is maintaining the fiscal and economic stability of state government at a time when revenues are declining and more program responsibilities are being returned to state government from the federal level. Virginia has had in the past and will maintain in the future a balanced budget. General tax increases an out of the question because of the economy and the already heavy burdens. Difficult decisions have to be made about eliminating some programs and some cost of government.Streamlining the organization and increasing the efficiency of government are essential. These actions must be taken while protecting the interests and needs of the elderly and handicapped. We must continue to make an investment in our future by seeking excellence in our educational programs at all levels.
Budget: Revenue projections indicate that the Robb administration budget cuts were necessary in order to maintain a balanced budget. The action reflected consideration for priorities in education and human services by excluding certain of these programs from the budget reductions. I think that the government should stay within its means just as we as individuals must. I support continuation of a strong Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission to identify waste and inefficiencies that can be eliminated from government operation.
Problem: The highways/transportation situation in Northern Virginia demands our immediate attention.Substantial progress was realized in the 1982 session of the General Assembly in increasing support for Metro. We do not currently receive our fair share of highway construction dollars. I will continue to work through a coalition of suburban-area legislators throughout the state to revise the highway allocation formula to get more money returned to Northern Virginia and the suburban areas for highway maintenance and construction. I will reintroduce my bill to increase the road taxes on heavy trucks in order that they are not subsidized by the motorist. Funds are available to meet our transportation needs when these funds are more equitably distributed.
M. F. (Frank) Ruppert (R), 49, of 1298 Woodside Dr., McLean, has owned and directed two real estate and construction companies since 1973. A former priest, he has been administrative director of the Leary School for Children with Learning Disabilities and has been president of Woodside Citizens Association. He holds a PhD from The American University.
Issue: The New Federalism shifting control of spending from the federal to the state level in many areas. The question is: Will Virginians exercise their new authority with responsibility and energy?
Budget: The 5 percent cut was necessary.
Problem: Transportation in my district, Reston, is crippled without adequate highways out and without adequate bus service.