Holmes discusses budget
By Michael Butler
Alabama House District 31 Representative Mike Holmes was in Tallassee last Thursday to distribute a check to the city school system for $2,500.
"One of the really pleasant parts of the job as a legislator is the comunity service grants included in the education trust fund budget," said Holmes.
Holmes talked about finalizing the state budget, a process that he said was not "pretty."
"It's my first experience as a redshirt freshman to go through a special session, not only one but two back to back. It's a process. Everything's accelerated. You have to read fast."
Holmes stated that Alabama is having to pay for not "living within its means in the past."
"They started raiding our Alabama Trust Fund back in 2010. They spread the revenue out over three years. The Obama stimulus funds were in there. The Education Trust Rainy Day Fund was raided. They had all that money, $1.7 billion that flowed in there, so they could keep living a life they could not afford. We don't have that money. We're not going to have it again. In fact, we have to pay back the two trust funds."
Therefore, cuts were made to the tune of about 4.5 percent.
"We have no choice," said Holmes regarding the cuts. "We had a great boom in the early 2000s because of the economy. (It) got propped up by borrowing and stealing, so here we are."
Holmes noted that he is proud of reform instead of tax increases. Also, Holmes said that there was talk of a statewide lottery, but that it never got serious attention.