Doce me faces voluntarem tuam quia Deus meus es tu

Monday, August 25, 2003
A few thoughts on Guv'nah Riley's new tax plan.

Perhaps the driving idea behind the plan is that it's time for corporations in the state to pay their "fair share" of taxes. That's where things start to get muddy for me. What, exactly, is a "fair share" of taxes? There's too much theory involved in that, I suppose, for Riley and his supporters.

I've lived in the state of Alabama for a very long time. Education in this state is by no means perfect, and I'll agree that it needs work. But why is it so difficult for someone, anyone - the Guv, the State Superintendent of Education, the janitor at the State House - to show the people of Alabama the state budget. How much money is coming in? Where's it coming from? Where is it appropriated, by whom, and then where is it going once it gets out of Montgomery and into the hands of county and local city governments?

The city of Birmingham has schools that are in shambles. Yet at last check, the system's superintendent was making over $200,000 a year. I realize that a strong salary is required to maintain quality employees, but give me a break. I went to a not great, but better than average public high school in one of the largest county systems in the state. If Riley's tax plan passes, and my old teachers get a raise, does that mean that suddenly the classes will become tougher, the standards greater, and the drive to teach and learn stronger?

I'm not holding my breath.

Vote no. If the public has to tighten its financial belt, so should the government.

E-mail here: mattcrashblog@hotmail.com
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