Former Alabama Gov. Don Siegleman visited Houston County’s chapter of the Alabama Democratic Conference.
He says the state's education system problems, point to one thing, lack of funding.
The democratic conference tonight focused on education.
Siegelman says if our state followed in the paths of Georgia, Florida, and Tennessee a lot of the "pains" our education system face, could turn into "gains"
Monday nights meeting focus, “a change is gonna come.” Siegelman believes one change education programs could face if he's elected governor, could be subsidized funding.
Siegelman says, "We need to pick up the pace and start bringing new schools and bringing more quality jobs, we need an education lottery so our children can go to college free and we can save the children's parents and grandparents a lot of money."
In Siegelman's last term he explored this very possibility, he lost to Alabama Gov. Bob Riley. Dothan City District 1 commissioner Larry Matthews partially agrees with the former governor.
"The lottery could help a lot but there's still other things that we'd have to amend to, of course you'd have a lot of administrative costs, so I don't know how much of that we would really profit from," says Matthews
In a conservative state like Alabama, would the lottery really fly??? Siegelman seems to think so
He says, "I believe that today, most people understand that we need to give our children a break in education, we need to give them the best education possible and I think they also realized that if we don't have a lottery, people are gonna, people like Bob Riley are going to keep talking about raising there taxes."
Former Dothan city school board member, and Democratic state conference president, Earl Jones wouldn't say whether or not he agreed with the lottery, but did say if we can spend money on every other amenity in the city, education should be no problem.
Jones says, "People tend to think that too much money is wasted on education but I challenge that."
According to Siegel man, a state lottery would save about $10,000 per parent, per year for a child's college education.
However, we should point out that when Siegelman was governor Alabamians voted against passing a state lottery.
Earlier in Siegelmans campaign, he and two of his former staff members were indicted for racketeering, bribery, and extortion.
In one of the charges he was accused of moving $550,000 from the education budget in a bid-rigging scheme.
Siegelman claims the charges stem from a conspiracy set up by Republican opponents.
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