Howard Hunter, III is a candidate for the North Carolina House of Representatives, District 5. His name will appear on the ballot on Nov. 8, 2022.
10 On Your Side reached out to all of the candidates running in this race. If you do not see a candidate listed with a profile, we did not receive one.
See who is on your ballot by viewing the candidate lists on the Virginia Department of Elections website.
Name: Howard Hunter, III
Race: N.C. House of Delegates, District 5
Biography: Howard J. Hunter, III is a Democratic member of the North Carolina House of Representatives, serving District 5 — Gates, Hertford and Pasquotank Counties. He is the owner and operator of Hunter’s Funeral Services with locations in Hertford and Gates counties, and is serving his fourth term in the North Carolina General Assembly. Hunter is the proud father of five children, is married to Lori Hunter, and lives in Ahoskie.
He began his public servant career in local government by serving 10 years on the Hertford County Board of Commissioners. As a commissioner, Hunter served on various boards and commissions, including the Mid-East Commission and Workforce Development Board, Hertford County Public Health Authority, Hertford County Economic Development Commission and the Chowan University Board of Trustees. While serving as county commissioner, Hunter was an active and well-respected member of the North Carolina Association of County Commissioners and was elected by his peers to serve as president of the association in 2012-2013.
Hunter is a dedicated member of the N.C. House of Representatives and serves on the following standing and select committees:
- Families, Children and Aging Policy — Chairman
- House Select Committee on an Education System for North Carolina’s Future
- Rules, Calendar, and Operations of the House
Select committees – Non-standing
- Joint Legislative Education Oversight Committee
- Joint Legislative Commission on Governmental Operations
- Joint Legislative Economic Development and Global Engagement Oversight Committee
Named a 2021 Jobs Champion by the N.C. Chamber in its annual “How They Voted” report, which details state legislators’ voting record on bills identified as critical to preserving and enhancing North Carolina’s position in the global race for jobs, Hunter was recognized as a jobs champion for voting the Chamber’s jobs agenda at least 80% of the time during the 2021 legislative session.
Hunter has been, and remains, committed to serving the people of District 5 as well as the state of North Carolina.
Why should constituents elect you to the N.C. House of Representatives?
I bring a wealth of knowledge and a unique, well-rounded perspective to the job, firstly through my experience as a small businessman and the owner and operator of Hunter’s Funeral Home, as well as serving as a Hertford County Commission for 10 years, and now as a statesman in my fourth term in the North Carolina General Assembly. I have proven capabilities navigating and working on complex issues in the House of Representatives and “reaching across the aisle” to do what’s in the best interest of all North Carolinians.
What are the top three priorities you would tackle if elected?
Continue my work and support of legislation in:
- Deploying broadband in rural areas through the GREAT Grant Program to close the “homework gap.” Statistics show that of the 76.2% of families with incomes of $10,000 to $34,999 have no internet access. The average median income for District 5 is $28,414, so suffice it to say that 76.2% of our population cannot afford, or do not have, access to high-speed internet.
- Increasing teacher and state employee pay. School districts across our great state started the new year with a sever teacher staffing shortage.
- Affordable healthcare for all North Carolinians. district 5 is graying, with an estimated increase of 35% in the 65 and older population group (on fixed incomes) in the next 10 to 15 years. Therefore, legislation, such as Medicare expansion, becomes more and more of a necessity.
What is the most pressing economic issue facing your district, and how would you address it?
Jobs, or the lack thereof. Economic issues are multifaceted and made far more difficult in rural, eastern North Carolina — from lack of adequate infrastructure (broadband, water, and sewer; roads, etc.), as well as workforce development.
Collectively, these are the lynchpins for industrial recruitment and/or expansion. As in the past, (as a budget conferee successfully negotiated non-competitive funding for the District in the amount of $4.2 million) I will continue to negotiate and seek funding to assist local government in building capacity to position themselves with shove-ready projects to seek additional grant funding in recreation, water/sewer infrastructure, downtown revitalization, etc. from state and federal funding agencies.
What are your district’s biggest infrastructure needs, and how do you plan to fulfill them?
How is gun violence impacting your district, and how do you plan to address gun violence?
Gang violence is no longer an urban problem. I will continue to work with local sheriff’s departments as they seek solutions to gang violence in their respective jurisdictions. During the last budget session I was successful in securing $170,000 to assist Hertford ($150,000) and Gates ($20,000) counties with funding for a Gang Taskforce and body camera equipment, respectively.