Special session holds opportunities, questions

Published 12:00 am Sunday, November 25, 2001

We, like our area lawmakers, want to know more about proposed legislation to close the corporate "loopholes" in Alabama’s laws and, hopefully, ease the money woes for the state.

Gov. Don Siegelman has called lawmakers into special session on Dec. 4 to consider hisproposals to offfset projected tax shortfalls by tightening the reins on Alabama corporations. But his proposal raises questions of fairness and, of course, concerns among those large corporations who would most likely be affected by the changes.

Our local lawmakers, among others, are taking a "wait and see" approach to the legislation, as well they should. The pressing need to properly fund education is Alabama isundeniable. But the approach we take to funding it should be thorough, fair and sustainable.

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And it must be balanced against the state’s need for growth and economic development, which go hand-in-hand with education.

Alabama and its residents deserve a top-notch educational system, and our lawmakers and state officials are charged with the responsiblity of funding that system. We need to eliminate words like "proration" from our conversations and, instead, focus on growth and excellence.

With that in mind, this special session should be approached with an open and curious mind, and our lawmakers need to weigh the proposals with consideration.


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