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Local Stuff — Why Now?
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Local Stuff

Rick Outzen of the local weekly, Independent News, has expanded the site to include more breaking news as well as the paper’s features.

In his blog he notes Fewer voters in Florida: “In 2005, the state legislature passed a bill requiring that in odd-numbered years, voter rolls be purged of people who have skipped two straight statewide elections.”

This is probably going to be a lot of people, especially progressives in the Panhandle. The problem is that a lot of races up here are won and lost in the Repub primary, and while everyone is supposed to be allowed to vote if the choice is down to two people, the local party runs a bogus write-in candidate for the general election to prevent it from happening. There are also too many incumbents who run unopposed. This means there are a lot of meaningless elections, especially on the odd years, making it easy to miss two in a row.

He also pointed to this Pensacola News Journal article, Santa Rosa layoffs loom:

Santa Rosa County government offices are anticipating layoffs and elimination of other positions based on the County Commission’s proposed 2008 budget.

— Sheriff Wendell Hall said he’ll have to lay off at least six sworn officers and 19 full-time civilian positions.

— Another 34 positions in county departments also will be eliminated, ranging from animal control personnel to road maintenance crew members.

— Offices such as the property appraiser and supervisor of elections are cutting jobs as well.

— A variety of other services also will be impacted, ranging from road paving to library hours.

The budget tightening is being done because of state-mandated cuts in property taxes.

Santa Rosa County is one of the most tight-fisted in the state, and is experiencing extremely rapid growth. The way the state mandated the cuts means that people who are already running a miserly budget must make the same cuts as those who have been throwing money around.

The Repubs have only one tool, one idea: everything will be better if we cut taxes.


1 hipparchia { 08.07.07 at 1:45 am }

this is how i end up voting republican. i stop for ice cream on the way home to get the bad taste out of my mouth.

2 Bryan { 08.07.07 at 9:51 am }

It’s really the only way to get a voice in local offices.

3 Steve Bates { 08.07.07 at 2:10 pm }

I know Texans who vote Republican as well, for the same reason… to have some say in local elections. Fortunately, in Houston, that’s not necessary. But in parts of West Texas, it’s fairly common.

I must admit, though, Florida has us beat six ways to Sunday when it comes to voter roll purges.

4 Bryan { 08.07.07 at 2:27 pm }

It’s also handy for getting rid of those pesky military voters who get annoyed about multiple tours.