Holley endorsement off point

Published 6:54 pm Friday, August 16, 2013

In reference to your editorial of Thursday, August 15, 2013 regarding Senator Jimmy Holley of Coffee County bringing money to Pike County and “his new district”, it appears that you have “the cart before the horse.”

It appears that you are electing Senator Holley 15 months before the actual election in November, 2014. Although Senator Holley may well be Pke County’s next state senator, the “new district” is not effective until after the vote is counted in the November, 2014 election.

Qualifying for the new Senate district that includes all of Pike County does not begin until 2014. Will Senator Holley qualify and have opposition in the Senate race for the new district? If he runs, will he be elected? It is interesting that he has come to Pike County to dole out money.

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Senator Bryan Taylor is Pike County’s State Senator until someone is elected to the new Senate district seat in November, 2014. Senator Taylor will be our State Senator during the 2014 Alabama legislative session. He continues to represent our county well in the State Senate.

It is unfortunate that our state legislators still have access to a slush fund in the state budget for them to dip into at their “discretion”. In this period of state budget cutting, these tax dollars need to be used for state projects and departments not for local projects like playgrounds and ball fields. Our courts are hurting for funds, our roads and bridges are not being repaired and vendors selling to the State are not being paid on time.

It is interesting that you reference Pike County benefiting when the late former State Senator Wendell Mitchell doled out state tax money like it was his own.

That practice by Senator Mitchell and other legislators helped put the State of Alabama in a tight budget crunch and Senator Mitchell and many of his fellow legislators were voted out of office in 2010.

Although the Miracle League Playground project and the Goshen softball field are laudable projects, they should be funded by local tax dollars and private funds not by tax dollars meant for state government programs.

The discretionary legislative slush fund in the state budget should be eliminated and state tax dollars should be allocated by legislative committees not by individual legislators.

Bert Fridlin

Troy, Alabama