Monday, June 06, 2005

Roanoke Times editorial roundup

Tuesday, May 31 -- Real Estate taxes: problem and symptom. Plans to stem rising assesments should take into account local needs, and federal and state governments' failure to meet their obligations. Kaine...acknowledges that real estate tax relief would require increased state aid to localities. Kilgore apparently would tie communities' hands and walk away.

Wednesday, June 1 -- The real cost of development. Impact fees could help local governments pay for infrastructure needs generated by new growth -- but only if the General Assembly will allow it. In most parts of the country, the fairy tale that development pays for itself has been laid to rest. Virginia should recognize that reality, and grant local government the ability to recoup the costs associated with new growth.

A president at odds with reality. Iraq, Afghanistan and the terrorist threat all contradict Bush's misleading rhetoric.

Thursday, June 2 -- Holding Virgina on the road. The outgoing transportation chief forced the state's road agency back on course. Whether it stays there will depend a lot on the next governor. Virginia has an estimated $25 billion in long-term transportation needs. The General Assembly, supposedly flush with revenues from a small tax increase that anti-tax idelogues decry as folly, gave highways an $848 million fusion this year. The state has far, far to go.

Friday, June 3 -- Scott voter registrar should step down. A mom [Willie Mae Kilgore] and election official with two sons on the ballot has a higher duty to the public interest.

Saturday, June 4 -- Bad news for investors. SEC nominee Christopher Cox lacks the current commissioner's commitment to reforms necessary to restore confidence in financial markets... President Bush's nomination of Cox paid lip service to the importance of financial market integrity

Sunday, June 5 -- The widening gap in child care. OK, demand more work from parents getting government aide, but they'll need more help watching the kids. Need now exceeds subsidies...In Bush's America, more workers are poor, and the poor on TANF will have to work more.

If not a U.S. gulag, far too much like one. Abusive secretive treatment of prisoners from Iraq and Afghanistan is troublingly similar. President Bush dismissed as "absurd" Amnesty International's charge that his administration has set up a Soveiet-style "gulag" for prisoners in the so-called war of terrorism. But Amnesty is off the mark in degree, not substance. The Soviet Union...

Monday, June 6 -- America Inc., up for sale. Lobbyists, spreading money strategically across party lines, exert undue influence in Washington. The people need to take back their government. The influence-peddling that barely masquerades as lobbying in Washington - the "free expression" of "political views" that increasingly amounts to the purchase of public policy by big campaign contributors - is rotting the republic at its foundation of representative democracy.