Thu Oct 30 16:20:19 PDT 2014
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What Voters Need to Know About Amendment Two
Allison Mechanic

Aside from choosing which candidates to vote for on Nov. 4, Alabama voters also have to weigh in on five different amendments. In Houston County, amendment two has been getting lots of attention due to the majority of the Houston County Commission voicing their opposition to it. Amendment Two gives voters a chance to decide whether or not $50 million should be taken from the State's Trust Fund and given to National Guard Armories around the state. Elected officials agree that Alabama's National Guard Armories need more funding, but what they don't see eye-to-eye on is how they should get those funds. If Amendment Two passes, the money will be repaid over a 20-year period. It can be used for plans, construction and maintenance of Alabama's National Guard Armories. If the money is used to fund the armories, it can't be used on other city and county project which worries some elected officials. "A lot of counties around the state use the money we get from the trust fund to pave roads and build seniors centers and things like that that’s the money that is being taken away if this is approved," explained Houston County Commissioner Chairman Mark Culver. "As the monies that counties get to do those kind of things we cant afford that we don’t have the ability to go to the state trust fund and borrow money there's just other ways we can fund the national guard armories and the state needs to look at those ways." Other elected officials see the amendment differently. "Its not the best case scenario but it's the only one. There are very few options and fortunately it will be paid back and that is not many times you can put in a dollar and get a dollar match and in this case the 50 million turns into 100 million and the cost is spread across the state plus the return I think is much greater than the 15 to 20 thousand per county which approximately what it is for Houston county," said AL Representative Paul Lee. To learn more about amendment two and the other four amendments visit; http://www.legislature.state.al.us/statewide_ballot_measures/statewide_ballot_measures.html.

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