Time for a change

Letters

Posted: Wednesday, November 01, 2000

The quality of Alaska life has been hard hit in the last decade. It is painful to see the economic downswing, and view friends and neighbors leaving Alaska to find better living and working conditions elsewhere.

When I arrived in Alaska in the 1980s, this was definitely "the land of opportunity" where an individual with a creative idea and a capacity for hard work could make a good living. Now, economic decline and continued cuts in legislative funding have made achieving the American dream nearly impossible. Serious cuts have been made to virtually all state funded programs which have the capacity to increase jobs, economic development, and provide needed services to our Alaskan population:

Education funds have declined over 35 percent in the last decade; senior citizens have had programs cut, even the longevity bonus; Fish and Game Department cuts have put fish management resources at risk; lack of action resulted in a federal takeover of fish and game.

Robin Taylor has been our state senator during these critical times. Robin has voted to take money from small school districts ad allocate it to larger ones by voting for Senate Bill 36. In 1993 Taylor also voted to phase out the longevity bonus in a critical 11-9 vote. Taylor ignored his party's advice and prevented Alaskans from voting on an amendment to the state constitution to bring it into compliance with federal law which resulted in the federal government having oversight of Alaskan fish and game, and state lands and waters. While facing these critical times, Taylor has failed to work cooperatively in the state Legislature. Of the last 22 bills Taylor introduced, he couldn't get co-sponsors for the 19 of them.

It's time for a change. Greg Middag has gone to the people to seek solutions to these problems. He's talked with the constituents in this senate district for the last five years. He's listened. He's cared. He's developed a plan to help Southeast Alaska by bringing people together with mutual respect and seeking common ground. He's worked to make our political process more open and honest. Greg is dedicated to building strength, diversity and opportunity within our communities to provide a rich environment for personal and economic growth. Greg will be a state senator who is strong enough to lead and smart enough to listen.

Joy Davis

Petersburg



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