Hopeful for a vote

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, June 3, 2003

Much has been said, and written lately, about the seriousness of Alabama’s fiscal situation.

Our schools are in trouble. Our prisons are in trouble. Our senior citizens are in trouble.

Now, this is the same sorry state our state has been in for some time.

However, this is the first time there’s been someone in power, i.e., the governor, who was willing to trade his political future and the political futures of those of his party down the ballot to make significant changes to the way we do business in Alabama.

His first task &045; develop a plan. He’s done that with the aid of seasoned financial director Drayton Nabors and Nabors’ staff.

Task No. 2 &045; convince Alabama’s historically hardheaded Legislative body that the people of Alabama should be treated as adults and given the right to vote on the measure themselves.

This one was a bit harder but Gov. Riley has almost done this as well.

With only a few days left in the special session, we are eager to see if all of the parts of the governor’s plan will pass &045; whether the Legislative body will allow the people of Alabama to vote on the measures he has suggested in their entirety.

Gov. Riley’s plan includes significant increases in property taxes, an increase on the sales taxes of automobiles and the elimination of a state income tax credit for federal income tax,

among other measures.

It is, by far, the most aggressive attempt to change Alabama’s fiscal situation ever.

And Alabama residents could be faced with making a decision for themselves by the fall depending on the actions of members of the Legislature.

Whether the package would, or should for that matter, pass a vote of the people remains up in the air.

We are hopeful, however, that we will be allowed that choice come this fall. The decision we make at that time, if given the right, remains to be seen