Standing shoulder to shoulder with environmental leaders on the farm of London Grove resident Gay Schellenger (452 N. Guernsey Road), the London Grove Township Board of Supervisors Chair Tom Houghton highlighted his desire to see Pennsylvania and Chester County emerge as leaders in managed growth.
Houghton received the endorsement of the Pennsylvania League of Conservation Voters (PALCV) in his quest to become a state representative in the Pennsylvania General Assembly.
"We endorse Tom Houghton in his bid to become state representative because we believe he has the vision and the leadership necessary to fight to protect the health and welfare of families," said Michael Fedor, Executive Director of PALCV.
Fedor revealed this is the League's number one legislative race of the fall campaign. Houghton is working hard to replace twenty-four year incumbent State Representative Art Hershey. "While Art Hershey is respected as a man of long service to his community, the times are changing. It's time for new leadership in Harrisburg that will respond to the changing needs of the growing communities of this district," said Fedor. Over 50 incumbents won't be returning to the House or Senate in January and PALCV wants to see Hershey retire with them.
"The beautiful 154-acre DuBosq farm behind me, our board fought to save from becoming an 88-acre cement-paved industrial composting factory," said Houghton. "This is just one example of how I"ll fight to preserve our way of life for the health and safety of our families."
PALCV operates a political action committee that will devote time and money to the race in the 13th district. Fedor says the League will be putting most of its resources into door-to-door campaign efforts and direct voter contact. "We're going to meet the people of this district on their doorsteps and talk to them about priorities for a cleaner, healthier future. A future that includes Houghton as their representative in Harrisburg."
When asked for examples of Hershey's poor record, which prompted PALCV to make the 13th district its priority, Fedor noted the following:
* Hershey championed ACRE in the House last year, which stripped local municipalities of certain powers to regulate and protect families from the negative impacts of factory farms. Lower Oxford is now in a court battle brought on by the Attorney General over its rights to local control.
This stripping of local power was granted by the ACRE legislation.
* Despite once serving as chair of the House Environmental Resources and Energy Committee, Hershey has a career environmental score of less than 30%.
* Hershey supports a failed plan to construct two, four-lane Rt. 41 bypasses that would have consumed open space and hurt local residents and businesses.
* Chester County voters see land issues and preservation of rural economies and farms as high priorities. These priorities are shared by PALCV, but Hershey has been on the wrong side of many of these issues for at least a decade.
"This is a crucial time. We've got momentum, and now we're going to make sure the voters know who the best choice is for the future of this area," said Houghton