A new voice for a new district

Brent Holloway announces his candidacy for Utah House District 62 on Monday evening. Supporting him on stage were, from left, his daughter London Blackburn, his son-in-law Travis Blackburn, and his wife Tammy Holloway, Fossil Ridge Intermediate School, St. George, UT, March 5, 2012 | Photo by Kathryn van Roosendaal, St. George News

ST. GEORGE – Approximately 50 people gathered at Fossil Ridge Intermediate School on Monday evening to show their support for local realtor and newspaper columnist Brent Holloway as he announced his candidacy for Utah’s House District 62 on the Democratic ticket.

Brent Holloway, with wife Tammy, announces his candidacy for Utah House District 62, Fossil Ridge Intermediate School, St. George, UT, March 5, 2012 | Photo courtesy of Dorothy Engelman, Washington County Democratic Party, St. George News

“Our goal this year is to have people vote for the person, not the party,” said Dorothy Engelman, chair of the Washington County Democratic Party, as she welcomed everyone to the event. “Mr. Holloway is committed to improving the educational system in Utah and we support him as he becomes the first to register to run for office in Utah’s newest House district.”

“A few months ago, I began to sense a little tug deep down inside – to do a little more – to do my part in helping my community,” said Holloway as he stood in front of the school, framed by the American and Utah flags and patriotic balloons.

“You see, we are facing unique challenges in this state, the likes we’ve never seen before,” he said. “We now live in a global economy.  … So, how are we doing in meeting this challenge? The people currently in power of Utah’s politics don’t hesitate to tell us over and over again that we are the ‘best managed state in the Union.’ The reality is, our per-pupil spending is not near the bottom of the nation – we are last, and I mean dead last.  Do you really believe that our so-called ‘best managed state in the nation’ is fully equipped to fight this global war of competing economies?”

Our state lacks commitment to our children and their education, said Holloway, a message that garnered support from educators and parents in the crowd. Several held handmade signs showing their support, and others clapped and cheered as he announced “It’s time for our kids;

“it’s time for Utah. I’m excited to bring balance to Utah politics.”

“I think the creation of the new 62 district will be a boon to us,” said former Democratic Party chair Cyril Noble. “It is closer to us; it is narrowing the area. (District) 62 is a nice compact district.”

Noble was supportive of Holloway and his campaign, and not just because Holloway is running as a Democrat.

“What I like about (Holloway) is he does project what he says he is. He is compassionate. He is courageous and he is competent. He has stood up for gay people. He has stood up for school teachers. He deserves a good try.”

Others were more cautious in their support. Chris Tolboe, a local attorney, is hoping that whoever is the new Representative for District 62 will take a strong stand on the issues important to the people who live here.

“How, for instance, can we develop this city without creating the problems found in big cities, like pollution,” Tolboe said. “And I hope he will pay attention to the issues that are preventing the state from supporting our education.”

The Utah House districts were redrawn last year, adding the new District 62 to Washington County. This district has no incumbent. For detailed information on District 62 and Utah other districts, go to the Washington County Clerk’s website.

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Copyright 2012 St. George News.

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