Home 2014 Races Video: Alan Howze Delivers Opening, Closing Statements at Arlington County Board Debate...

Video: Alan Howze Delivers Opening, Closing Statements at Arlington County Board Debate Last Night


The debate was held last night at the Aurora Hills Community Center. Alan Howze is the Democratic candidate in the race. His opponent is life-long Republican John Vihstadt, who has donated thousands of dollars to the likes of George W. Bush, McCain/Palin, and Romney/Ryan.

  • Howze’s response follows the moderator ripping the “Arlington Way” as a sham (e.g. “huge development projects shepherded through by the County Board, skirting zoning laws, etc.”; “holding sham public hearings at which the decisions being discussed have already been made; bureaucratic runarounds; etc.)

  • Arlington, Va. – March 18, 2014 – The Arlington Education Association Political Action Committee (APAC) today announced its recommendation of Alan Howze for election to the Arlington County Board on April 8.

    Jaim L. Foster, an Arlington Public Schools teacher and APAC co-chair said, “Arlington Public Schools are among the best in the nation, but we have serious needs such as increasing school capacity, managing budget constraints, and ensuring the highest quality educational opportunities for at-risk students and all students,” Foster said. “Alan recognizes that investing in our schools is one of the very best ways to make our community even stronger.”

    “The educators of APAC believe that Alan Howze is the superior candidate for County Board. As a community leader and active school parent, Alan has clearly demonstrated the skills and will to support our schools and make Arlington work for everyone,” Foster added.

    The Arlington Education Association Political Action Committee (APAC) is an independent arm of the Arlington Education Association. The purpose of APAC is to support the goals of the Arlington Education Association through the election of pro-education public officials. APAC recommends and works to elect candidates for Arlington County Board, Arlington School Board, and other elected offices representing Arlington County.

  • …he’s pushing the fact (to Republicans, anyway) that he’s a big-time Republican. Clever, clever.

  • Dear Streetcar Now Supporters,

    You may have seen some advertisements and flyers in the mail from county board candidate John Vihstadt.  He calls the Arlington streetcar line a “vanity project,” and declares he will re-prioritize spending for schools instead of the streetcar line.

    Not only is this rhetoric divisive, it is also very misleading about how county spending works.  The county board cannot re-direct the funds planned for the streetcar to schools, because it would be against the law.

    According to the county’s 2013-2022 Capital Improvement Plan, page E-26, the county plans to pay for construction of the streetcar primarily from four sources:

    Federal transportation funds (can’t be used for schools);

    Arlington’s Transportation Capital Fund, which is created from revenue from the commercial property assessment for transportation (can’t be used for schools);

    Revenue bonds paid for by the commercial property assessment for transportation (can’t be used for schools); and

    Reimbursement of transit spending from the state (can’t be used for schools).

    With the difficulty in getting federal transportation grants, the new CIP will likely rely more on the other three sources, which have more revenue available now, due to the recent state transportation bill, than was available when the current CIP was adopted.  

    Nobody has taken money from schools for the streetcar project in the past, and nobody is suggesting taking money from schools to pay for the streetcar in the future.  

    Equally important, neither John Vihstadt nor any other current or prospective member of the county board is going to get more money for schools by spending less on streetcars.  The funding sources chosen-to avoid affecting funding for schools-cannot be used for schools.

    And they won’t lower your property taxes either by cancelling the streetcar, because the revenues to pay for it come from assessments and regional taxes preset by the state legislature.  That money would just be spent on other transportation projects, like widening roads for more cars.

    John Vihstadt should stop misleading people about these things, but he probably won’t, so we need to take action:

    We need to make sure people understand that the streetcar funding plans use designated transportation revenues to ensure Arlington’s generous school construction commitment continues.

    We need to make sure John Vihstadt does not get elected to the Arlington County Board.

    I cannot state it any more plainly-John Vihstadt wants to stop the streetcar.  We need to stop him.  

    Alan Howze supports the streetcar. He understands that high quality transit not only helps us shape development toward pleasant, walkable places, but also that commercial development along transit corridors provides the strong tax base that pays for our excellent schools.  Or as he says:

    It is not “invest in the streetcar OR invest in our schools” it is “invest in the streetcar SO we can invest in our schools.”  

    Please vote for Alan Howze, and get your friends and neighbors to vote for him as well.

    The election is April 8.  It is a regular election, not a primary.  You vote at your regular polling place.  You can also vote early absentee if you will be away from Arlington that day.

    Turnout in special elections like this is usually very low, so each vote is even more critical.

    Vote to support Streetcars!  

    John Snyder

    Chair, Arlington Streetcar Now