Cleon Long

Key Facts

Party Democrat
Status Challenger

Background

Cleon Long graduated from the Georgia Institute of Technology with a BS in General Science and BS in Mechanical Engineering. Long is a former Dominion Engineer [1, 3]. Long has also been involved with the Newport News Commission on Youth and Newport News Planning Commission, Newport News Board of Zoning Appeals, Board of Trustees with the Virginia Living Museum, Board of Directors for Boys and Girls Club of Virginia Peninsula, and Board of Directors Smart Beginnings Virginia Peninsula [1].

Key Issues

Infrastructure

Long wants to create a safe city where schools, businesses, parks, and neighborhoods blend together cohesively [1].

Gun Policy

Long supports gun violence prevention. He believes that conditions of poverty are the leading cause of criminal activity. To combat this, he wants to restart the Summer Training Enrichment Program (STEP) as a public/private partnership to offer summer internships for at-risk students and a pre-employment program for graduating seniors in at-risk areas. He also wants to fund more school counselors in Newport News Public Schools to address undiagnosed conditions that students struggle with and improve and expand the No-Cost Rental Inspection Program throughout the city to ensure every tenant has suitable living arrangements [1].

Education

Long wants to fill the vacancies in employment within Newport News Public Schools, give teachers consistent raises above increases in their cost of living, and add support staff to relieve the work of teachers [1].

Economy

Long supports economic growth in Newport News and believes that the city government should help all businesses instead of a few well-connected developers. He supports developing a comprehensive plan to build upon the strengths of the city. He also believes the access to I-64 and I-664 provides a good opportunity to attract a regional entertainment complex to Downtown Newport News [1].

COVID-19

Long supports the use of mail-in ballots to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Long’s campaign encouraged supporters to vote by mail for safety during COVID-19 in campaign emails, phone banking, and social media [4].

Housing

Long wants to make housing more affordable for first-time home buyers. He wants to build a community land trust, similar to that of Richmond’s Maggie Walker Community Land Trust, which, when combined with a land bank, converts vacant and tax-delinquent properties into more affordable homes. Through community land trusts, which are non-profit community-based entities, a homeowner owns the equity in the home but does not own the land itself, similar to a condominium [5].

Endorsements

Newport News Forward; Simonds for Delegate; Mason Senate; Newport News Education Association

Sources

1 Cleon Long for City Council

2 VPAP

3 Public Reports

4 Blue Virginia

5 Facebook