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Hartselle Enquirer

Tax failure could open gaming doors

By Staff
Bob Ingram, Alabama Scene
MONTGOMERY–It would be a strange irony, but the fierce opposition by the Alabama Christian Coalition against the Riley tax package could result in something far worse for this group–the legalization of gambling in Alabama.
If the Riley plan is rejected, and at this moment its chances of approval appear slim, the governor and the legislature of necessity will have to act swiftly to find money before the beginning of the new fiscal year on Oct. 1.
They will need to find as much as $500 million.
An obvious direction would be an increase of 1 cent in the state sales tax…it requires no vote of the people and would start generating money instantly. But it wouldn't produce enough money.
That is where legalized gambling comes in. It too requires no vote of the people and it would be a popular tax for many people…for the non-gamblers it would be a tax they would not have to pay.
If this happens…if of necessity the legislature legalizes video gambling machines and even casinos…Milton McGregor and his friends, the supporters of legalized gambling…might consider hanging a portrait of John Giles–the vocal head of the Christian Coalition–in the lobby of their casinsos to show their appreciation.
In an interview on Fox News Network, Moore hinted that he might make a "stand in the door" to block the removal of the monument but then backed off that position and said he would announce his plans later. Whatever he does will surely attract national news attention.
Trammell served as Finance Director during the first administration of Gov. George C. Wallace and retained the office during the brief administration of Gov. Lurleen Wallace.
With George Wallace out of pocket so much of that time in his futile efforts to be elected president, Trammell was left back home to mind the store. He was, for all practical purposes, the governor.
Few men in state office were more feared than Trammell, and he liked it that way. In fact it was Trammell himself who came up with a word portrait of himself: "I am the meanest (SOB) in the Wallace Administration." He didn't lie.
Trammell had his problems. He served time in federal prison for federal income tax evasion and he had a bitter falling out with Wallace. But he left an indelible impression on state government and politics.
And before you ask, the nickname is not the "Bears", which seems most appropriate. There were copyright problems with that name, also some political correctness involved. Another school in Tuscaloosa used to be called the "Black Bears", and that was changed some time ago.
The name finally chosen: The "Stampedes", and the logo will feature a herd of stampeding elephants.
After that year all uniforms worn by major league baseball teams will be made by Pennyslvania-based Majestic Uniforms.
A spokesperson
for Russell said the firm had made what it thought was an "exceptional
offer" to renew the contract but they were outbid by the competitor.
Russell will continue to produce uniforms for countless college
athletic teams.

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