Leading by example

Published 8:56 am Wednesday, August 31, 2016

This past week, we set off on another 5th District tour as we visited Lawrenceville, Boydton, Kenbridge, Charlotte Court House, Halifax, Cumberland, Dillwyn, Farmville, Appomattox, Altavista, Rustburg, Bedford and Rocky Mount. The tour will continue through the rest of the district this week, as I have always found it essential to constantly listen to 5th District Virginians’ points of view.

The focal point of our visit in each locality was the site in each respective county where we have held staff local office hours in a given community each quarter over the last five and a half years. The 5th District is a sprawling one, and while our permanent offices in Charlottesville, Danville and Farmville are spread among the different regions of the district, it has always been important to us to go into each and every community to be available to every constituent who seeks to petition their government or get help in their dealings with federal agencies. 

We are grateful to those in each community who have opened their doors and afforded us the opportunity to be in better touch with our fellow citizens.

The coordination of work between the respective levels of government — local, state and federal — is essential to having a government that is responsive to the needs of the people it serves and one that is appropriately balanced in its functions.  

We have seen time and time again how federal government overreach harms local governments and their communities, and we seek out information about those harms so we can work to fix them and allow localities to efficiently and effectively provide the important services for which they are responsible. 

Our local leaders set a great example in their responsible administration of public safety, education, health and other core community services all while balancing their budgets every year and doing so often in a nonpartisan way that is focused on the common good of the community. The last thing they need are expensive and illogical federal mandates to make it harder for them to provide these services in a fiscally responsible way.

Robert Hurt, a Republican, represents Charlotte in the U.S. House of Representatives. He can be reached at (434) 395-0120.