Amendment Two needed
Published 5:58 pm Wednesday, November 1, 2006
And amendment on next Tuesday's ballot won't affect Escambia County, but it does affect our entire state and its future.
Amendment Two seeks to raise the minimum number of mills allocated to education in a county to 10.
Most counties in the state - including Escambia County - already meet that minimum. But 30 school systems, including Conecuh County and Andalusia City, have less than 10 mills allocated to education.
The amendment has sparked some controversy. Gov. Bob Riley said he is concerned about having voters in other counties approve something for everyone else. Lt. Gov. Lucy Baxley says she's voting against it because she's against any new taxes.
But Amendment Two gives direct power to Alabamians to change our future - and gives us the power to change what legislators haven't yet had the courage to do: Give enough money to education.
The state has tried in the past to make funding equitable, but the efforts have allowed some school districts to slip through the cracks.
Raising the minimum to 10 mills doesn't even amount to much of a tax increase for the school districts affected - but it could make a huge difference in educational improvements for our state.
Here are the school districts that would be affected by Amendment Two and their current millages: Autauga County, 7; Andalusia, 7; Arab, 7.5; Athens, 8.5; Barbour County, 7; Bibb County, 7; Blount County, 9; Chilton County, 9; Conecuh County, 9.5; Covington County, 7; Crenshaw County, 8; Cullman County, 7; Dale County, 9; Daleville, 8; Dothan, 8; Elmore County, 7; Fayette County, 7; Hale County, 7; Houston County, 8; Jackson County, 7; Lamar County, 7; Lawrence County, 9; Limestone County, 8.5; Linden, 8; Marengo County, 8; Marion County, 7; Montgomery County, 7; Pike County, 9.7; Tuscaloosa County, 9.5; and Walker County, 8.
Amendment Two doesn't change anything in Escambia County.
But it could make a world of difference for all of Alabama.
Kerry Whipple Bean is publisher of The Brewton Standard. She can be reached at 867-4876 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.