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By Congressman Robert Hurt
Over the past week, I had the opportunity to meet with local elected officials throughout Central and Southside Virginia who join me in representing the two cities, 21 counties, and 39 towns that make up Virginia’s Fifth District. It is an honor to work alongside these state Senators, Delegates, members of Boards of Supervisors, City and Town Council members, School Board members, and other Constitutional Officers to serve the fine people we represent.
It is vitally important that all levels of government work together closely, particularly on the issues where the federal government is having a negative impact on the important work that these officials do on the state and local level. For example, I heard a great deal from these officials about harmful unfunded federal mandates imposed upon states and localities.
Unlike the federal government, states and localities are legally bound to make the difficult decisions needed to balance their budgets and provide critical services like public safety and good schools. Federal mandates make it much harder for our local communities to hire and keep quality teachers and provide our first responders with the resources they need to protect our citizens. I am committed to reducing burdensome and unnecessary mandates on states and localities so they can continue providing these vital services while maintaining low property taxes.
My state and local counterparts have also informed me about federal policies that have hindered their efforts to create jobs in our region. Our local officials are constantly working to attract companies to our communities to provide good-paying jobs, but federal bureaucrats have distorted federal law in a way that is preventing these jobs from coming to the Commonwealth. My bipartisan bill, the Commonsense Permitting for Job Creation Act, came from discussions I had with local officials in Henry and Pittsylvania Counties about federally imposed roadblocks that are impeding much-needed economic development. I appreciate the opportunity to collaborate with local leaders for the betterment of our communities and I look forward to the continued progress of this important bill.
Government works best when it is closest to the people, and we are fortunate to be represented by dedicated public servants at the state and local level. I am committed to working alongside these leaders to set policies that will create a brighter future for all our citizens and communities.
If you need any additional information, please visit my website at hurt.house.gov or call my Washington office: (202) 225-4711, Charlottesville office: (434) 973-9631, Danville office: (434) 791-2596, or Farmville office: (434) 395-0120.