DUI Bill - A bill I'm sponsoring, SB 276 was endoresed by Mother's Against Drunk Drivers (MADD) yesterday. The bill requires ignition interlocks for all repeat offenders and first-time convicted drunk drivers with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .15 or greater. Read the press release here.
Forever Wild Program - I attended the public hearing on the Forever Wild Program first thing in the morning. The bill was passed out of committee in a 5-3 vote. Some great points were made on both sides and this will continue to be heavily debated in the Senate chambers in the days ahead. My thoughts are included in an OpEd submitted to several local papers last week.
Pro-Life Rally - I was honored to attend a Pro-Life rally on the steps of the State House after we adjourned yesterday. I’ve co-sponsored and look forward to passing this legislation. From a guy who was placed in an orphanage at birth and raised in a foster system until adopted by a loving family who raised me as their own – I thank my birth mother for making the right decision. God certainly has a plan for all of us.
This weekend I plan to visit the monthly Coffee Call at the Athens Veteran’s Museum Saturday morning and am really looking forward to the first Cruise-In of 2011 at Athens on the Square tomorrow evening.
Monday I will visit Tanner High School to present the Girls and Boys Basketball Teams with a Senate Resolution commemorating their State Championships. Both teams winning the State Championship from the same school – that’s amazing. What a great program!
Monday afternoon I’m attend the Limestone Co United Way Lunch and that evening I’ll attend the Alabama Educator’s Association meeting in Huntsville. Now, back to the topic of tenure reform.
Tenure Reform - As stated in yesterday’s blog, we need to reform the tenure process. There is a good deal of misinformation already floating around; particularly in emails. My request is for everyone to read the bill, read the overview paper and form your opinion on exactly what issues you have with the reform bill.
I'll share that I source information from several sources when developing a position on legislation, tantamount to watching CNN and Fox News cover the same political story. This helps me grasp several sides of a debate.
Believe it or not, I read the emails – looking for individual opinions and input rather than the corporate, cut and paste, “Don’t Support The Bill” responses. One source of information, and a supporter of this bill is the Alabama Association of School Board's. I provide readers a copy of their legislative newsletter Advocate for Schools and a Students First Resource that debunks 5 Myths of SB310.
Again, I ask those that oppose the bill to provide sound recommendations to improve it. A few have taken me up on this request and I deeply thank them for their valuable input. I will share with committee members next week.
I've also linked the latest video form AEA for those that have not seen it. Quite frankly, there are some things not covered in the video that I thought would be. I'm really surprised if anyone thinks the tenure process is okay in its current state. Teachers are wonderful people but occasionally a bad apple is discovered - even happened in my platoon in the Marines! As a taxpayer and legislator, the fact that our laws allow a teacher to remain on the payroll after being convicted of a crime is ludicrous.