Change of address won't change what's wrong with government

Posted: Sunday, March 03, 2002

Here we go again.

Last week, state workers verified that a ballot initiative to move legislative sessions to the Matanuska-Susitna Borough has more than the 28,783 signatures required to be on the November ballot. Sen. Randy Phillips, R-Eagle River, has filed a bill which mimics the ballot measure. If Phillips' bill passes, the initiative would be taken off the ballot.

The measures specify that if a Mat-Su location can't be found, the Legislature would meet in Anchorage until a suitable Mat-Su spot is located.

Alaskans have wasted too much valuable time and money on this issue over the past four decades. Apparently, however, some folks just don't get it: Good government has nothing to do with where the policy-makers are. It has everything to do with who the policy-makers are. Sound government begins with citizens making wise decisions about who they put in office, not where those people go to work.

If supporters of the legislative move think government would be better, more honest if it were located nearer the majority of the state's population -- in other words, Anchorage -- then they ought to be looking at who they send to Juneau.

Having said that, however, let's vote on it -- again, once and for all.

Alaskans don't need this divisive and pricey issue constantly raising its head. The state has more important issues to be concerned about -- namely, a billion-dollar budget gap. At a time when Alaskans need to be united on bridging that gap, we certainly don't need a non-issue like a legislative move dividing us.

Alaskans will recognize this for what it is -- a red herring disguised as "government for the people" -- and give it the beating it deserves. Our hope is when this initiative goes down in flames those supporters will remember "the people" have spoken -- and let it rest in peace. Forever.

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