Saturday, November 1, 2014

News
Required Special Election Will Cost Taxpayers
By Ashley Thompson


This month, both Secretary of State Beth Chapman and State Representative Jay Love stepped down from their positions before their term was up.

Both left to pursue other opportunity, but how do these resignations affect taxpayers?

State Representative Jay Love says he's resigning to take another opportunity. Rhonda Smith lives in his district and tells us she understands how he feels.

"I feel that if it was in the best interest of his family and he had an opportunity to excel, then we all have to do what we need to do for our families."

Beth Chapman also stepped down early to take a job with the Alabama Farmer's Federation. Political Analyst Steve Flowers says he doesn't think elected officials should leave their positions for their own profit.

"It shows a total disregard for the people that elected you," he says. "That you totally thumbed your nose out at them and said thank you for electing me, but I've used this job to parlay another job."

Because the Governor appointed Jim Bennett to replace Chapman, her resignation doesn't cost taxpayers anything but filling Jay Love's seat will.

"We estimate that in the 50 to 60 thousand range right now," says Montgomery County Probate Judge Steven Reed.

Reed says that money is used to fund a special election that's required to replace the state representative.

"The machines, the paper, the notification that you're using to let people know...it's just everything else that goes along with the process, the ballots. All of those things have to be paid for, have to be printed."

Some people say they understand why these resignations make others upset.

"If you don't finish a term that somebody hired you for, then naturally some people are going to be let down," says Montgomery resident Cecil Shannon.