Candidates express views at forum

John Hinkell, a candidate for the Union Hall District on the Franklin County Board of Supervisors, speaks about his political platform. (Seated from left) J. Riley Hodges, candidate for Franklin County sheriff; Rick Smithers, candidate for Franklin County Board of Supervisors, Gills Creek District; Lorie Smith, candidate for Franklin County Board of Supervisors, Gills Creek District; and Jennifer Woofter, candidate for the 22nd District of the House of Delegates.

Voters recently got the chance to hear their candidates’ positions on state and local issues. A candidate forum was held Monday at Trinity Ecumenical Parish for contenders seeking a seat in the Virginia General Assembly and various offices in Franklin County, including the board of supervisors, school board, sheriff and commonwealth’s attorney. Bryan Haskins, Pittsylvania County commonwealth’s attorney, also attended the event.

Democratic hopeful Flo Ketner, who seeks to represent the 19th District in the Virginia Senate, said it is time to fully protect rescue and police services. Many area first responders lack up-to-date equipment, she said.

The incumbent senator in the 19th District, David Suetterlein, R-Roanoke County, said he has been fighting Gov. Ralph Northam for fair electric rates and has worked hard this year for a pay increase for educators.

Del. Charles Poindexter, R-Glade Hill, who is running unopposed in his bid to continue serving the 9th District of the House of Delegates, said he intends to put regulations on slot machines in convenience stores and opposes a new Green Deal.

Dustin Evans, a Libertarian hopeful for the 16th District of the House of Delegates, said a reason for the stagnation that he’s seen in Henry and Patrick is regulations. Speaking about agriculture, Evans said he intends to remove regulations to make it easier for farmers to “stay in the game.” Virginia could be a cutting edge state for hemp farmers, but there’s so many regulations, he said.

-For more information, see the Oct. 9 edition of the Smith Mountain Eagle-

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