Candidate for State Representative of the 13th district Tom Houghton received the endorsement of the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties.The APSCUF is a union that represents 6,000 faculty members at Pennsylvania's 14 publicly owned universities-the State System of Higher Education. APSCUF was the major organization that sponsored and secured passage of Act 188, the law creating the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education. As a state-owned system, approximately 37 percent of university funding is provided by the General Assembly.
"The State System of Higher Education is one of Pennsylvania's greatest assets," said Houghton. "A college education is the price of entry to compete in today's global economy. We must not only maintain high standards of excellence from our education system, we must keep raising the bar. We must do everything we can to support the mission of APSCUF to make our state system the model of excellence nationwide."
Houghton is running on a mandate for change following a narrow defeat in 2006 against 24-year incumbent Art Hershey (R). The seat will become vacant upon Hershey's retirement at the end of the year. In a hotly contested race in a district that was nearly 2:1 Republican, Houghton earned 47 percent of the vote in 2006, more than any prior Democratic candidate to run for this post in the history of the 13th District.
Houghton's vision to improve the quality of life for residents in the district encompasses the following priorities: curbing rising property taxes, protecting open space, saving farmland, defending the environment, providing access to affordable quality healthcare and bringing bipartisanship to Harrisburg. Houghton has served seven years on the Board of Supervisors for London Grove Township and the past five years as chairman. He has a law practice based in West Grove.
Background on the APSCUF Founded in 1937, the APSCUF represents faculties that provide education in 217 undergraduate and 107 graduate degree programs in 32 academic areas, as well as numerous certification and continuing education programs. APSCUF has one of the most impressive records of any higher education faculty union in the nation in: defending faculty rights; successful negotiations and contract implementation; protecting academic freedom; saving faculty jobs; and, securing the rehiring of faculty preserving quality education. One in 34 Pennsylvania citizens is attending or has graduated from a State System University staffed by APSCUF members.