Constitutional amendment up for vote Tuesday - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Constitutional amendment up for vote Tuesday

Posted: Updated:

Voters will have the chance to decide Tuesday how Alabama lawmakers will balance the state's budget.

There will be a statewide vote on a constitutional amendment...that reads in part..."...to prevent the mass release of prisoners from Alabama prisons, and to protect critical health services to alabama children, elderly, and mothers..."

Critics contend the wording itself is a scare tactic and that this vote is the result of a state legislature unwilling to make tough decisions on the general fund budget. Supporter say the referendum isn't a scare tactic, but a scary prospect of what could happen if the vote fails.

Children's of Alabama CEO Mike Warren and some state leaders say if the amendment fails, it would have devastating results for the state's healthcare industry.

"Without this passage, all of our jobs and the healthcare infrastructure will be in jeopardy. It absolutely must pass," Warren says.

Sixty-five percent of the hospital's patients receive help from Medicaid, which is one major program that would benefit from the transfer of funds.

Senator Jabo Waggoner takes it beyond healthcare. He says state agencies need the money too. Without it, he contends, their budgets would be cut seventeen percent.

"You're talking about a loss of jobs. You're talking about a loss of services. You're talking about fewer state troopers on the road," Waggoner says.

Not every state lawmaker sees it that way. Senator Paul Bussman is opposed to the amendment.
He accuses supporters of the referendum of using scare tactics.

"You know, Armageddon is going to happen. Hospitals are going to close, nursing homes are going to close, and I just don't think that's going to happen," Bussman says.

He adds that state leaders should look for other ways balance the budget. Tuscaloosa real estate developer Stan Pate agrees.

"They were elected based on efficiency, based on all these promises. And what's the first thing they do? They want to go into the savings account of the trust fund," Pate says.

Pate also doesn't  support the amendment because there is no mention of paying back what is taken.

But supporters say it will be replaced.

The Governor's office has assured the people of Alabama that the money will be paid back," Waggoner says.



  • Anniston - Gadsden Area NewsMore>>

  • Gadsden reelects Mayor Guyton, approves Sunday alcohol sales

    Gadsden reelects Mayor Guyton, approves Sunday alcohol sales

    Gadsden reelects Mayor Guyton, approves Sunday alcohol sales

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 8:55 AM EDT2014-08-27 12:55:56 GMT
    Gadsden's Mayor Sherman Guyton wins reelection with 56% of the votes. The city also voted in favor of Sunday alcohol sales with over a 2-1 ratio; 68% to 32%.More >>
    Gadsden's Mayor Sherman Guyton wins reelection with 56% of the votes. The city also voted in favor of Sunday alcohol sales with over a 2-1 ratio; 68% to 32%.More >>
  • Anniston police and fire departments downsized by proposed budget cuts

    Anniston police and fire departments downsized by proposed budget cuts

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 8:01 PM EDT2014-08-27 00:01:02 GMT
    The Anniston city manager's proposed budget for 2015 cuts more than $1.5-million in spending compared to this year. The police and fire chiefs are concerned about the cuts to public safety.More >>
    The Anniston city manager's proposed budget for 2015 cuts more than $1.5-million in spending compared to this year. The police and fire chiefs are concerned about the cuts to public safety.
    More >>
  • Third anniversary of murder of Anniston police officer

    Third anniversary of murder of Anniston police officer

    Monday, August 25 2014 8:44 PM EDT2014-08-26 00:44:45 GMT
    The family of Justin Sollohub took him off of life support three years ago Monday. "He lived from the 24th to the 25th for the organ donation," Jeniffer Morris said about her son. "Organ donation needs to be important to everybody. We never know, when there's somebody in our [family], when it hits home, that somebody needs an organ. It is important to us but it needs to be important to everybody."More >>
    The family of Justin Sollohub took him off of life support three years ago Monday. "He lived from the 24th to the 25th for the organ donation," Jeniffer Morris said about her son. "Organ donation needs to be important to everybody. We never know, when there's somebody in our [family], when it hits home, that somebody needs an organ. It is important to us but it needs to be important to everybody."More >>
  • StrangeMore>>

  • Arizona man drives hour to save injured bear

    Arizona man drives hour to save injured bear

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 12:28 PM EDT2014-08-27 16:28:42 GMT
    An injured bear cub is recovering in Arizona after a man who initially thought it was a dead dog along the side of the road scooped it up and drove it 80 miles to get help.More >>
    An injured bear cub is recovering in Arizona after a man who initially thought it was a dead dog along the side of the road scooped it up and drove it 80 miles to get help.More >>
  • State court: Workers' comp OK for kickball injury

    State court: Workers' comp OK for kickball injury

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 12:28 PM EDT2014-08-27 16:28:41 GMT
    Have you ever been hurt in a company softball or kickball game? The South Carolina Supreme Court says you may be entitled to workers' compensation.More >>
    Have you ever been hurt in a company softball or kickball game? The South Carolina Supreme Court says you may be entitled to workers' compensation.More >>
  • New York meat truck driver charged in stinky spill

    New York meat truck driver charged in stinky spill

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 11:19 AM EDT2014-08-27 15:19:02 GMT
    State authorities have charged the driver of a truck that lost part of its load of expired meat outside an upstate New York mall, resulting in some irate motorists whose vehicles drove over the stinky spill.More >>
    State authorities have charged the driver of a truck that lost part of its load of expired meat outside an upstate New York mall, resulting in some irate motorists whose vehicles drove over the stinky spill.More >>
  • Bear heads stolen from remote Maine cabin

    Bear heads stolen from remote Maine cabin

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 11:19 AM EDT2014-08-27 15:19:02 GMT
    The person who broke into an off-the-grid cabin in remote western Maine didn't get away with money, jewelry or other valuables. Police say the thief took a pair of bear heads.More >>
    The person who broke into an off-the-grid cabin in remote western Maine didn't get away with money, jewelry or other valuables. Police say the thief took a pair of bear heads.More >>
  • Gold thief offers to pay for pilfered nugget

    Gold thief offers to pay for pilfered nugget

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 9:47 PM EDT2014-08-27 01:47:49 GMT
    A man who took a nearly $5,000 gold nugget from a Juneau, Alaska, jewelry store offered to pay for it two days after his face appeared in photos distributed by the media.More >>
    A man suspected of walking out of a Juneau, Alaska, jewelry store with a gold nugget worth nearly $5,000 developed a conscience and paid for it - after his image was distributed by police through a "crime stoppers" program.More >>
Most Popular
Stories
Videos
loading...