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Dennis Husch For Dranesville Supervisor

Dennis Husch, former Herndon Vice Mayor and Town Council member, is a candidate for the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors in 2011

Dennis Husch of Herndon, Virginia has announced his candidacy for the Dranesville District seat on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors in the November, 2011 elections. Mr. Husch believes the solution to solving government fiscal crises at all levels lies not in debating the symptoms such as underfunded government services, but rather “changing the policies and assumptions that have created and are maintaining the current expanding bureaucracy.”

In a recent discussion with NOVA TownHall, Mr. Husch outlined what he sees as the major challenges currently facing Fairfax County: “education, budget, transportation and improving the responsiveness of the government to its citizens.”

MESSAGE FROM THE 2010 ELECTIONS

Mr. Husch sees the results of the November, 2010 elections as a clear message to those responsible for public policy:

Taxes are too high, spending is out of control, government is too big and intrusive, and anyone seeking public office who does not ascribe to “first principles” will be rejected by the voters. As Thomas Jefferson noted, citizens will only take so much intrusion from the government before they take back their government.  November was an indication that “we the people” have had enough: What people earn belongs to them; the people have personal responsibility and rights given by God – not the government; the people will decide locally how to manage and improve their quality of life; and the people will force the federal government to constrain its activities as demanded by the Constitution.  Politicians who ignore the voter proceed at their own political peril.

EDUCATION

Regarding the Fairfax County public school system, Mr. Husch notes that

Education costs represent over half of the county budget and we all need to ensure that money is being properly allocated to provide students with the best possible education. I have concerns about teacher-student ratios (class size) and making sure those ratios are consistent across all schools in the county. I am also concerned about the “tooth-to-tail” ratio – that’s the comparison of the number of front-line classroom teachers to the number of administration/central office personnel.

[emphasis added]

BUDGET

During his terms on the Herndon Town Council (1994-2010, 2006-2008 as Vice Mayor), Mr. Husch has spent 16 years preparing and reviewing municipal budgets – along with 40 years preparing competitive corporate budgets during his professional career as an operations analyst and program manager (click here for Mr. Husch’s Curriculum Vitae).

If elected to the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors, Dennis Husch intends to apply his budget management expertise toward creating a more efficient government, “not through arbitrary spending cuts or moving problems to future years, but by changing the policies and assumptions that have created and are maintaining the current expanding bureaucracy.”

The budget is the place where real impact can be made; not just as a superficial attempt to reduce taxes, spending and the size of government, but as the place where the core policies can be validated and changed that drive the preparation and the magnitude of the budget … In every case the policies and the assumptions applied determine the magnitude of the budget: Change the policies and the outcomes can be much different.

It is unfortunate that many times elected officials are drawn into budget discussions that don’t really solve problems. For example, suppose there is a need to reduce spending by the police force and there is a discussion of how many new police cars will be purchased. If the number is reduced from 70 to 50 there certainly will be a reduction in spending, but the spending problem is not really solved – it is just moved to the next budget.  Eventually the police cars will have to be replaced. The opportunity in this example is to discuss the policy being used to determine how many police cars are needed and the criteria (age, mileage, maintenance history) applied to determine when the police cars should be replaced. A change in the criteria will result in a change in the number of replacement vehicles needed not only for this year but for future years.

It is also unfortunate when the response to a call for reduced spending (due to reduced revenues or a demand by citizens for fiscal responsibility) by the bureaucracy is a proposal to cut the number of teachers, police or firefighters. Such initial budget proposals must be met with disdain and summarily rejected as the bureaucracy’s attempt at self-preservation and not a valid response to the demands of the citizens whom they serve.

TRANSPORTATION

Transportation policy is as critical in western Fairfax County as in any part of the U.S. Mr. Husch believes that Fairfax County Board decisions in the coming years can mean the difference between success or “continuing disaster.” In the short term, he thinks spot improvements can make a difference. These include lengthening turn lanes, improving intersections, synchronizing traffic lights and repairing roads and shoulders.

But as residents of Fairfax and Loudoun counties will learn in the near future, some of the most significant upcoming public policy decisions will involve funding the Metro system. Having served on the Phase II Tax District Commission for MetroRail, Mr. Husch thinks our focus should be on the fiscal implications of the “larger picture:”

For example, construction of the Metro Silver Line from Wiehle Avenue to Dulles Airport to Loudoun County will be paid for by increasing the tolls on the Dulles Toll Road.  At what point does the magnitude of the tolls force traffic off the Toll Road and onto neighborhood streets and Route 7?  The funding and operation of the Silver Line must be accomplished in the context of the unintended consequences that could further exacerbate our current traffic congestion problems.  No plan for spot improvements will offset a bad funding plan for the Silver Line.

GOVERNMENT RESPONSIVENESS

Public policy specifics aside, it could be argued that most electoral sea changes in America recently have resulted from elected bodies that have ignored the will of their constituents. Dennis Husch has seen this simple law at work during his tenure in Herndon and in the U.S. as a whole, and he believes it should be instructive for those seeking to serve on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors:

Improving the responsiveness of government to the needs of those they serve will be the most important and rewarding part of the job for anyone elected to public office.  Constituent services – bringing the service and expertise of the government to the citizens – must be the first task. For 16 years on the Herndon Town Council I accomplished that task and I look forward to continuing that service on the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors. The first step in that process is to remind the government that they work for the citizens…

Because of government overreach and out of control spending, people are suffering and worrying about their and their family’s future. They gather at their kitchen tables to establish priorities and budgets so they can live within their means.  Governments at all levels – county, state and federal – must do the same thing. I sincerely believe that the voters have awakened and will demand these governments formulate plans to live within their means, reduce taxes, reduce the size of government and cease the usurpation of our individual liberties.  Irresponsibility will not be rewarded with votes.

In light of the fact that it is early in the 2011 election cycle, and because of the redistricting process which will take place as a result of the 2010 U.S. Census the boundaries of the “Dranesville” District will not be determined for several more months, we asked Mr. Husch this closing question: However your district is defined after redistricting, it is likely to include voters unfamiliar with your career of public service in Herndon. What are the main things people should know about Dennis Husch?
 

I am an experienced leader who has served eight consecutive terms on the Herndon Town Council and who has served on several Fairfax County and Virginia Commonwealth boards.  I have a demonstrated record of being a fiscal conservative, an advocate for lower taxes and an advocate for a transparent and open government that serves the citizens of our community.  While others may speak of an open and transparent government, I know what it really is and how to do it because I’ve done it.

Click here for more information and to contribute to Dennis Husch for Dranesville District Supervisor (scroll to the bottom of the page).

See below the fold for the official press release on Dennis Husch’s candidacy.
continue reading…

Polls closed at 7 pm in Herndon and Leesburg, results in the latter are coming in. We will update Herndon and Leesburg election results throughout the evening.

With 92% of votes counted Ken Reid appears to be the top vote getter for Leesburg Town Council. Good news! Congratulations, Ken!

More Virginia election results to come ….

UPDATE: The polls closed 2 hours and 15 minutes ago and still no Herndon election results, while Vienna results were reported a half hour ago. Annoying.

UPDATE II: Ken Reid is now listed as 3rd for Leesburg Town Council with 100% of the vote recorded. Dicier than I reported earlier, although good news in a pretty Democrat area. Not sure about absentee and provisional ballots, but I hope this means Ken is back on the Council.

UPDATE III: 9:30 pm, polls closed 2 and a half hours ago in Herndon and still no SBE results. Must be because there are so many Town Council candidates and probably a really low turnout. it is a single voting precinct but they are probably checking each machine twice or more. Stay tuned …

UPDATE IV: The SBE page is down, which tells me it is being updated …. results for Herndon soon?

UPDATE V: A commenter just reported the following as Herndon Town Council election results:

Connie Haines Hutchinson
Lisa C. Merkel
Sheila A. Olem
Jasbinder Singh
William B. “Bill” Tirrell, Sr.
Grace H. Wolf

Still no SBE confirmation, but if the above holds true … Connie and Bill Tirrell are great for the town, but otherwise, too bad for Herndon. I will be interested in seeing the final turnout results.

UPDATE VI: Final SBE results confirm the above. Herndon will be interesting to watch over the next two years.

Herndon Voters:

Please click here for the 2010 Herndon Sample Ballot which you can use as a guide at the polls tomorrow.

Voting takes place Tuesday, May 4, at the Herndon Community Center from 6 am – 7 pm. Click here for a map to the Community Center.

As last time there is a clear cut group of candidates who will make a strong Town Council.

This includes existing council members Connie Hutchinson, David Kirby, Bill Tirrell, and Charlie Waddell, along with candidates Phil Jones and Carl Silvertsen. Herndon’s outstanding Mayor Steve DeBenedittis is running unopposed.

An opposition group representing the left-liberal values of the previous (pre-2006) town council has been trying for the past two years to create public interest for their slate but was not even able to come up with a candidate for mayor.

Herndon has led the state as a model of good local government for the past 4 years; by voting for the candidates listed above the residents of Herndon can ensure this fortunate state of affairs continues.

GREAT turnout in Herndon tonight for Phil Jones’ official kick off event in his campaign for a seat on the Herndon Town Council. About 50 people had shown up in the first half hour when I had to leave for a family thing, but they were still coming in so overall a very successful event. Here are some shots of the early evening.

Visit the Herndon United Web site for more info and to send Phil a contribution.

Phil Jones for Herndon Town Council

It is refreshing and inspiring when a citizen-activist decides to throw their hat in the ring. Phil Jones, co-founder of Help Save Herndon, is running for Herndon Town Council in the election which will be held on May 4. Though he modestly describes himself as a “relatively new resident,” Phil has been involved in civic issues in Herndon for nearly ten years.

He became well-known as a result of the immigration enforcement imbroglio in the town (click here for NVTH coverage of Herndon), but in recent years Phil has been a powerful voice on critical issues related to commercial development. Visit the Herndon United Web site for the full background.

With regard to political alliance Phil has not been in 100% lockstep with the current Herndon elected leadership, most of whom he worked hard to elect in the last two cycles. Phil is an independent thinker, and if he is elected the citizens of Herndon will have an advocate on the Council who is thoroughly conservative but committed to evaluating each new issue on its merits. You can’t pigeonhole Phil Jones when it comes to quality of life decisions for the town of Herndon. He is going to vote his conscience rather than any ideology, which in my view is what you want from your local government officials.

Longtime readers here know that my interest in Herndon stems from the fact that I can walk to the Herndon town limits in three minutes, which is roughly 1/5 the time it takes me to drive to Wegmans. What happens in Herndon affects Sterling. Herndon is also the closest municipality to where I live – Leesburg is by comparison a county away – and the good government actions by the Herndon Town Council over the past four years have been a benefit to my neighborhood. When they shut down that day labor center on Sterling Road, just south of my subdivision, they did us all a favor, so the elected officials of Herndon are heroes in my book. As an activist Phil Jones helped make that happen, and I want to see Phil get a chance to have a direct impact on town decisions.

Furthermore, I have seen firsthand the effort Phil has committed to the Herndon community. He is intelligent and extremely articulate, and with the prospect of Metro landing in Herndon in the near future the town needs people like Phil who will pay close attention to the important decisions that must be made. Also, considering all that is happening in our country right now, it seems relevant that Phil Jones is a man of impeccable conservative credentials – just the type of person we need to move into the public policy leadership chain of command.

So my advice to the residents of Herndon, and all of my fellow U.S. citizens, is to please send a message of support to Phil Jones. Go to his Web site and contribute a few bucks (you need to “hover” over the Donate tab to get the “Donate” button).

Fellow conservatives: Phil Jones, like Ken Cuccinelli, is one of our own. Let’s help him out.

The entire pro-immigration enforcement town council in Herndon, Virginia was re-elected. Mayor Steve DeBenedittis was re-elected over challenger and former council member Harlan Reece by about 1300-900 votes. Reece’s seat will be filled by Richard Downer (no friend of the current council) so the status quo is precisely maintained.

A good day for the good guys.

UPDATE: View complete results here.

A few photos, maybe some more coming tonight along with some more commentary …

Former council member Ann Null (l), local grassroots political maestro Butch Baughan, and new Vice Mayor Connie Hutchinson.

Herndon, meet your newly re-elected Town Council – well, four of ‘em anyway (minus Dave Kirby): from left, Tirrell, Hutchinson, Waddell, Husch.

Re-elected Council Member Charlie Waddell with our man in Richmond, Tom Rust.

And … drumroll please … the man who truly had the coattails tonight, en route to a blistering 40% victory

MAYOR STEVE!

The non-politician, graduate of Herndon High School, improbable victor two years ago (to say the least), has cemented the citizens’ victory of 2006.

The entire Herndon Town Council w/ significant others. Newcomer Jim Vickory (4th in from right) did not make it in, but in his remarks tonight he noted that his entire goal in running was to help re-elect the current Council which has done so much good work, and since the majority was maintained he has no regrets. It was a very touching and uplifting speech, apropos to the occasion.

May 6, 2008

Help Save Loudoun PAC has endorsed the following candidates in today’s town of Herndon, Virginia elections:

Herndon Election: May 6, 2008

Help Save Loudoun PAC endorses the following “Rule of Law” candidates who are committed to continuing the town’s role as the standard-setters for local immigration enforcement in the U.S.

MAYOR: Steve DeBenedittis

COUNCIL MEMBERS: Dennis Husch, Connie Hutchinson, David Kirby, William Tirrell, James Vickery, and Charlie Waddell.

Herndon Polls are located at:

Herndon Community Center
814 Ferndale Ave
Herndon, VA 20170

Why is the election significant to Help Save Loudoun? Because the vast majority of eastern Loudoun County’s residents are as affected by Herndon’s policies as are Herndon’s residents. Sterling backs up to Herndon, and I, like many Sterling residents, live closer to the former day labor center than most Herndon residents.

The Herndon mayor and town council have accomplished the following: Made Herndon the first town in the U.S. to enroll in the federal 287(g) program in which local police assist federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement; stepped up zoning enforcement by quadrupling the number of agents investigating overcrowded houses; shut down the infamous Herndon day labor center which had established the town as a safe landing area for illegal aliens; passed a resolution to deny business licenses to companies hiring illegal workers; and sent a legislative package to Richmond which resulted in new laws increasing the penalties for driving without a valid license and overcrowded houses.

More on why you should vote for these candidates: Info from BVBL blog; info from NVTH blog.