MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - There seems to be a great reluctance in the Alabama House and Senate to increase taxes in our state. It's not the best way to get re-elected. But then cutting services is not either.
But by most accounts, Alabama needs additional revenue in order to provide services that affect everyone, with greatest impact on the poor, the mentally ill and children.
While some legislators are calling for more efficiency in government, and I'm, all for that, most agree that programs such as Medicaid, Corrections, Mental Health and Human Resources simply need more money. While low taxes and less government are desirable, when essential services are impacted, it's time to raise taxes, and we have some room to tax.
Alabama ranks in the bottom 20 percent among all states in nearly all tax categories. Notably, we are fifth lowest in property tax, as a percentage of total taxes, and in state and local tax collections per capita, we are dead last.
Leadership requires risk taking. Alabama's legislators need to do what we sent them there to do. If that means raising taxes to fund government, and risk not being re-elected, then so be it.