MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - This week the state announced that five state parks, 31 driver's license offices, at least 15 Alabama National Guard Armories, and one ADECA surplus warehouse are closed or will be very shortly. All closings are due to the budget cuts put forth in the 2016 general fund budget.
Legislators will tell you they are making the tough choices to achieve the will of the people. On the surface what's so bad? A few parks that were not greatly attended, driver's license offices in rural communities and armories. The main population of Alabama is not affected so this is all okay.
I disagree with all of it -- the closings, the lack of impact and most of all the "making the tough choices" part. Early next year the legislature will be back in session, and they will be charged with delivering a new budget. Everything will cost more, as it always does, and more decisions will have to be made.
There will be no discussion about reopening parks or driver's license offices because there will not be money to keep open all the ones left, much less look backwards and fix this year's mistakes.
The tough decisions that our legislators should be making are the ones that turn around the budget free fall that this state has been in for years, not continuing to try and ride out the downward spiral and hope they keep their job for as long as they can.