Warm Southern Breeze

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Alabama Republican Lawmaker: Teacher Payraise “Unbiblical,” Defends 62% Legislator Payraise

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, February 2, 2012

Republicans of all stripe are just plain stupid.

Period.

Well, there seem to be so many stupid ones… genuinely stupid ones. They seem to think folks live in little Utopian, Ivory-towered worlds where everything is nice and clean and pretty and sweet smelling, and everything is perfect all the time.

Sorry folks. That ain’t my world.

Prolly ain’t yours, either.

Now, that doesn’t mean I don’t like the people – I like some folks whom identify as “Republican,” and on occasion think some things a few of ’em have said to be worthwhile – it’s the rampant radical stupidity that seems to so freely ooze from their pores.

Read on.

Republican Alabama State Senator Shadrack McGill, Woodville - Times-Journal photo by Lindsay Slater

Republican Alabama State Senator Shadrack McGill, Woodville - Times-Journal photo by Lindsay Slater

A Republican Alabama state senator – Shadrack McGill, from Woodville – whom represents Alabama’s 8th District, recently decried any possibility of increase in teacher pay while defending raising his own pay.

While speaking recently at a prayer breakfast in Fort Payne – in his district – he addressed a question about the recent death (of apparent natural causes) of Ray Crosby, a former legislative analyst, whom was facing one count of bribery in federal court, whose retrial along with six other defendants was scheduled to begin this past Monday (30 January 2012).

For the readers’ benefit, here’s the background on the question of Mr. Crosby:
The WSFA channel 12 television station in Montgomery reported that “Crosby had worked for more than 30 years writing legislation for members of the Alabama State Legislature on various topics.

“Much of Crosby’s responsibilities and work came to light over the past 18 months as he was charged as a defendant in a federal corruption trial with 10 others. It was alleged by prosecutors that Crosby had accepted bribes in return for his work to write legislation in favor of a casino owner, Milton McGregor.

“McGregor owned Victoryland, a bingo facility, dog track, and hotel in Shorter, AL. Crosby was listed in Alabama Ethics Commission filings as a consultant to the Macon track which justified his $3,000 per month income from McGregor.

“During a nine week trial which began in June 2011 and ended with no convictions, Crosby was painted as a key individual in the conspiracy scheme by federal prosecutors. During opening statements, lead prosecutor Justin Shur spent the first five minutes of his talk discussing how vital Crosby’s bill-drafting role was to McGregor and the other defendants.

“Prosecutors argued that the monthly payments from McGregor to Crosby were spent in order to maintain McGregor’s influence in the legislative process.

“Defense attorneys argued that Crosby had done nothing illegal and that he was merely collecting his consulting fee for work he had done with the Macon County Greyhound Track. Defense attorneys never answered directly what the $3,000 per month payments were for from McGregor to Crosby.

“Several of Crosby’s charges were dismissed by District Judge Myron Thompson who presided over the case. Several weeks later the jury acquitted Crosby of all but one charge against him.

“Crosby was going to face a lone federal programs bribery charge against him Monday morning. It is unclear what impact his death will have on the timetable for the trial. Jury selection was supposed to start at 9AM.”

The Times-Journal of Dekalb County Alabama reported legislator Shadrack McGill’s remarks, in a story published Tuesday, 31 January 2012, 5:32 pm | Updated: 5:24 pm, Wed Feb 1, 2012.

“McGill, R-Woodville, said a 62 percent pay raise in 2007 – passed first by a controversial voice vote and later in an override of a veto by then-Gov. Bob Riley – better rewards lawmakers and makes them less susceptible to being swayed by lobbyists.

“Lawmakers entered the 2007 legislative session making $30,710 a year, a rate that had not been changed in 16 years. The raise increased it to $49,500 annually.

“That played into the corruption, guys, big time,” he said. “You had your higher-ranking legislators that were connected with the lobbyists making up in the millions of dollars. They weren’t worried about that $30,000 paid salary they were getting,” McGill said, adding that lawmakers have to pay for their expenses out of pocket.

“McGill said that by paying legislators more, they’re less susceptible to taking bribes.

“He needs to make enough that he can say no, in regards to temptation. … Teachers need to make the money that they need to make. There needs to be a balance there. If you double what you’re paying education, you know what’s going to happen? I’ve heard the comment many times, ‘Well, the quality of education’s going to go up.’ That’s never proven to happen, guys.

“It’s a Biblical principle. If you double a teacher’s pay scale, you’ll attract people who aren’t called to teach.

“To go in and raise someone’s child for eight hours a day, or many people’s children for eight hours a day, requires a calling. It better be a calling in your life. I know I wouldn’t want to do it, OK?

“And these teachers that are called to teach, regardless of the pay scale, they would teach. It’s just in them to do. It’s the ability that God give ’em. And there are also some teachers, it wouldn’t matter how much you would pay them, they would still perform to the same capacity.

“If you don’t keep that in balance, you’re going to attract people who are not called, who don’t need to be teaching our children. So, everything has a balance.”

“Last year, McGill introduced a bill that would tie legislators’ pay to the average teacher’s pay, including benefits. He later claimed teachers in Alabama rank fourth in the nation in average pay and benefits of about $65,000.

“The AEA [Alabama Education Association] would have a tough time with that because they don’t want people knowing that information,” McGill told an audience in Fort Payne in November.

“Sen. Phil Williams, R-Rainbow City, said last week he would introduce a bill to raise the pay of teachers on the job for fewer than nine years by 2½ percent. Williams said the state can’t afford to give a raise to all teachers.

“Rep. Craig Ford, D-Gadsden, told the Times-Journal on Friday that such a raise wouldn’t be fair to longer-serving teachers.

“They’re the ones that are having the hardest time paying their bills,” said Ford, the House minority leader.

“In a statement later in the day, Ford said, “This proposal may be one of the most absurd things Phil Williams and the Republican supermajority have ever tried to pull.”

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14 Responses to “Alabama Republican Lawmaker: Teacher Payraise “Unbiblical,” Defends 62% Legislator Payraise”

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  3. […] Alabama Republican Lawmaker: Teacher Payraise “Unbiblical,” Defends 62% Legislator Payra… (warmsouthernbreeze.wordpress.com) Joel Watts is a Masters of Theological Studies student with a focus in Rhetorical and Mimetic Criticism of the Gospel of Mark. His interests are in Second Temple Judaism with a focus on intertestamental literature. Currently, he is a TA for Old Testament at United Theological Seminary under Dr. Vivian Johnson, Associate Professor of Old Testament.Connect me on Facebook | Twitter | Google + | Website […]

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