Monday, August 9, 2010

Rural Democrat Carol Porter: Leadership, Ethics, Representative Government = Solutions

Our Founding Fathers came together to form our government because there are some things we do better as a whole: educating the public; providing efficient transportation; safeguarding natural resources; and providing safe, healthy communities. This infrastructure is what creates the economic climate of a state. When strong, this infrastructure will encourage business and grow jobs.

In Georgia’s government, however, we have two problems preventing this strong infrastructure: lack of leadership and lack of ethics. Georgia must stop the abuse of power by a few politicians in leadership who are manipulating the legislative voting process to meet their will and not that of the citizens. We must also reform ethics. If not, we cannot grow our economy.

At the beginning of every session there is much sound and fury about ethics reform and by the end of the session Georgians find it was all to signify nothing. This pattern must not be repeated.

Helping Atlanta will encourage economic development in other regions of our state.

Water: Solutions are there, just not the leadership to deliver them. Why not push to fix Atlanta’s leaky pipes; maximize gray water; use smart landscaping; install efficient fixtures; and improve water quality? On negotiating the water wars, why has our leadership allowed raising the pool level of Lake Lanier two feet to be all but taken off the table? It would be like building several reservoirs, finished in two years—not twelve, and reap huge savings for the taxpayer.

Transportation: Atlanta is in gridlock, without an adequate mass transit plan due to a series of poor decisions. For the price of the horse barn or fishpond in Perry we could have leveraged down the money to start passenger rail. Georgia also just lost $2.4 million that had been awarded for our transit projects. It went unspent for so long it expired. It will now be used in other states.

For all of Georgia, we must address education and taxes if we are to grow the economy.

Education: Without a well-educated workforce we will not attract the jobs of the future. We must get discipline under control, students reading on grade level, teach life and business skills, and then partner with technical and community colleges in high school—using post-secondary options that don’t penalize our public schools.
Taxes: The middle class and the small business owner and their employees can’t take much more. They are taking the hit at every turn. The current leadership oversaw the repeal of the Homeowner’s Tax Relief Grant and gave Georgia the largest single property tax increase in its history. The sick tax, the energy rate increase, the countless new fees; they are all back-end hits to the middle class. This will not grow our economy.

But once again, until our current administration and leadership changes, until our legislature is allowed to operate with true representative government, and until ethics are reformed, solutions for Georgia will remain just sound and fury; fodder for editorials, but signifying no real change.

This is why Carol Porter will get alot of crossover support from republicans & she will definitely win over independents.

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