Alabamians are facing a crossroads. Come Sept. 9, them must decide which way the state is to go in its budgeting and taxation of its
Published 7:57 am Wednesday, July 30, 2003
Every group that has an interest has weighed in on the issue. Every group takes a different angle on which way the people should vote, whether the governor's proposed tax package is good for business, bad for business, good for farmers and teachers and landowners or bad for the same groups. Loud voices are heard about how it will affect seniors and school children, how it will impact Medicaid and Medicare payments to doctors and nursing homes.
The closer we get to the election, the louder the
voices will become.
What is needed here is information, a lot of information.
The public should make sure it makes an informed decision.
There are places to go to get information that is relatively unbiased.
The Campaign for Alabama has a brochure that is clear, concise and easy to understand. It spells out what is in the bill, and how it will affect citizens at different income levels, with different value homes, with different deductions, with different acreages.
Granted, it is pro-reform. But if one knows that going in and reads with a skeptical eye, it is possible to get a fairly balanced idea of what is actually in the bill.
What citizens are being urged to do is to read the bill for themselves, not vote 'No' because they are afraid of taxes, or afraid of change, or don't like Gov. Riley.
On the other side, if someone reads it for himself, he will not vote 'Yes' because this lobby group or professional organization or relative said it was the right thing to do.
Then, if there are still questions, ask them.
There are plenty of people in both camps that can help voters find the information they want.
If not, go over to Flomaton Aug. 7 and listen to the governor himself explain the plan. Ask him or his staff the questions. Ask hard questions. This is no time to be kind for kindness sake.
This is such a momentous event in the history of the state that every registered voter should be working to educate himself on the issue at hand, and decide for himself which way the state should go.
And should anyone not do the homework on the issue, or not vote, or take the easy way out by throwing a dart at the ballot, rather than making an informed decision, then that person should forfeit his or her right to complain about the state and the way it is managed.
Vote yes, vote no, but vote informed. It is your state. Make your voice heard.