|Jack Donahue Newsletter 12-19-2006|
|Monday, December 18 2006 - 8:00 pm|
Last Friday, the Louisiana Legislative session ended in failure. The Governor blamed legislative Republicans for blocking her wild-eyed spending plans, and Republican leaders blamed the Governor for rushing into a session with very little planning and preparation.
Some of our legislative leaders were cheerleaders for a special session, but I knew from the beginning that it was a bad idea. Other good government groups, such as the Public Affairs Research Council, agreed with me
Instead of rushing into a session to spend our $2.4 billion surplus, the state should be carefully planning how to take advantage of this surplus to benefit all citizens instead of playing politics by awarding one group or another.
I have recommended that we convene a bi-partisan task force of business and community leaders and fiscal experts to carefully examine the needs in the state and then propose to the Governor and the legislature exactly how the money should be spent.
We have tremendous problems in our state such as a poor public education system, a health care crisis and an insurance emergency. Our businesses and homeowners are still in serious trouble and the minimal actions taken during the session amount to nothing more than a band aid on a gaping wound.
Sadly, we are losing a great opportunity to rebuild our state after the hurricanes of last year. The Road Home plan has turned into a tragedy as an out-of-state firm has received a contract worth $756 million and our struggling hurricane victims have received a pittance. Out of 123,000 qualified hurricane victims, only 82 have received the grants that were allocated by the federal government months ago.
There will be more challenges ahead in 2007 and an opportunity for historic change as the fall elections promise to usher into Baton Rouge new leaders with fresh ideas on how to reform the state.
I am excited about the upcoming campaign for State Senate, but to be successful I will need your comments, ideas and suggestions. Together, we can change this state from a laughingstock to a place where we can proudly live, work and raise our families.
Candidate, Senate District 11