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31 July 2008

Democrat Chris Strickland Calls For Priority Based Spending

Chris Strickland, the Democratic nominee seeking to unseat Republican state Representative James Mills, is out today with a solution to Georgia's budget woes -- Priority Based Spending.

Chris Strickland's plan calls for state programs to be evaluated for importance and effectiveness, with low priority programs being cut or eliminated in favor of more effective programs.

"This is how a normal household balances their finances. You don’t cut all expenses across the board in a household when things get tight; instead, you eliminate the wasteful spending," Strickland said. "No one cuts their mortgage payment or their water bill by 5% during tough times. The House should do what our households do -- cut out the frivolous expenses entirely, and fully fund the important necessities of Georgia taxpayers."

The Hall County Democrat also disputed Rep. Mills' answer to turn collection agents loose across the state to gather up money owed to the state by residents and business owners.

"The problem with Georgia's budget is a weakened economy, compounded with the tax-and-spend policies of the current House leaders," Strickland said. "Proposing penalties such as revoking driver’s licenses for delinquent tax payers is not a reasonable solution."

James Mills suggested to Access North Georgia.com that a way for the state to solve its budget problems, which resulted in Gov. Perdue dipping into the state's reserves, is to start revoking the business and drivers' licenses of individuals who are behind in their taxes. [Source: Access North Georgia.com, "Mills weighs in on state budget woes", July 30, 2008]

"Any tax system is going to have a percentage of delinquent taxpayers, and relying on 100% immediate and complete compliance to balance the budget is unrealistic. The only way to balance our budget is to convince the incumbent legislators in the State House to cut expenses," Strickland countered.