Holt's Address: Jim Holt Campaign, 2835 South 56th Street, Springdale, Arkansas 72762
Which Candidate Votes Your Values
(Running for US Senate Against Blanche Lincoln)
Jim Holt voted AGAINST All These Things: Gilbert Baker voted FOR them.
For actual voting record pulled from Arkansas Legislative site, see this link: http://www.wpaag.org/Holt%20-%20Baker%20&%20Holt%20voting%20records%20compared%202.htm
(1) Voted for the bill that resulted in $386 million tax to increase our sales tax to 6%. Act 59 (SB42), 2003 Session
(2) Voted for the facilities bill that allowed the State to take over all school facilities in Arkansas in 2004 (Facilities Committee recommended 4.5 BILLION for next five years.) Schools can no longer build or remodel without permission of the state and according to state regulations. Act 90 (HB1009 by Pickett Second Extraordinary Session of 2003. The following figures are documented in newspapers> During the 2005 legislative session, $ 114 million was funded for facilities from the state revenue. During the April special session another $ 50 million was appropriated, Broadway said. The state’s share of public school construction costs increased from the $265 million reported in June to $277 million in 2006 and $465 million in 07.
(3) Voted for the Omnibus bill that implemented a government controlled curriculum in every school in Arkansas that has resulted in numerous additional state department employees to oversee and control the implementation of that curriculum in the local schools. By 2006, 61 schools had been put on probation for some minor infraction that which allows the State Department to consolidate the school, take over the administration and suspend or even oust local school board members. Act 1467 (HB2697) 2003 Session
(4) Voted to give $107 million dollars to Arkansas Department of Education for 32 new employees, etc. They supposedly consolidated the schools to save money by hiring fewer superintendents. $22 million paid the salary for every superintendent in the state in 2003, but this $107 million gift to ADE would pay for 1,070 superintendents at $100,000 for a year. SB91 (Act 98), 2nd extraordinary session, 2003.
(5) Voted for the bill that sent $456 million to facilities in 2007 from the surplus fund (this is like hidden tax-taking money from surplus that could be used for other things people will be taxed on later.). SB833, 2007 House Bill 2501 and Senate Bill 833. $104 million was appropriated for facilities in 2005 and the state's share of facilities was $277 million in 2006.
(6) Voted for every consolidation bill that went through the Senate, for closing schools with enrollment of 500 (which didn't pass); with enrollment of 350 (which did pass and closed 45 campuses by 2006); for closing isolated districts (which put many kids on the bus for 3 1/2 hours a day after voting for a bill the year before that got through on the basis they would not close isolated districts. He also voted for countywide school districts (supposedly administrative only but the wording in the bill clearly gives authority for countywide school districts) SB132 of 2005 (This bill did not get out of committee in the House) The consolidation resulted in more centralized government, and some of the main supporters of the bill admitted it would not save a penny. There have been reports that it has costs the state and taxpayers much more.
(7) Supported and voted for all the following bills: The most powerful liberal Democrat Senator Argue (Senate Education Chair for several years) gloated over the amount of money raised and spent, writing the following in a guest article in the Democrat Gazette May 15, 2005. "In the current school year we’ve added $380 million to the school system. Next year we’ll add $170 million, and then in the 2006/07 school year, we will add another $98 million. In addition to these new operating funds, we’ve appropriated $104 million to begin our new school facilities program. This totals $752 million of new spending in our school system in the current and next two school years. Total K-12 spending is now 53 percent of total state general and dedicated revenues, an all time high." Note that "K-12 Note that "K-12 funding now accounts for 40 percent of the Colorado general fund budget." http://www.ncsl.org/programs/fiscal/tels2005.htm
(8) Sponsored (and we presume wrote) SB 430 (Act 685) in 2005 providing for a statewide election on issuing tax revenue bonds (Referred Question NO. 1) This bill if approved by voters would have left "Arkansas in debt for decades to come," according to newspaper articles. Citizens soon learned that because of veiled language in the bill, the Highway Commission would have had power to re-issue bonds for maintenance of highways up to the $575 million cap as many times as it wanted without further voter approval. This veiled language was a slick move to get around the wording of Amendment 20 to the Arkansas Constitution that guarantees the voters a right to vote on any state indebtedness. The amount of interest and bonding fees would have been $217 million or 37%. Fortunately citizens were educated through the work of dedicated opponents and voted it down 68% to 32%. (Former Senator Holt fought this issue and issued a press release on it.
(9) Was the sole co-sponsor of liberal Betty Pickett's HB2749 (ACT 1813) alcohol bill that has allowed the ABC Board to grant liquor licenses to numerous so called private clubs in dry counties in Arkansas. There have been approximately 133 liquor licenses issued to so called private clubs, mostly restaurants, since Baker got this bill passed.
(This is the end of the comparison of voting records since Jim Holt left the Senate to run for state office, but also note the following:)
(10) Gilbert Baker was quoted in newspaper article as saying on November 2009: "Senator Gilbert Baker, State co-chairman of the Legislature’s Joint Budget Committee, said he has no criticism about the growth in state government’s employee ranks." This quote was made in the newspaper article that reported, "In Beebe’s second full fiscal year as governor, 1,254 employees were added to the payroll, the second consecutive 1,000-plus increase under the Democratic incumbent and the fifth 1,000-plus increase in the past 11 years. ("State still hires, despite cuts" AR Dem Gaz by Wickline)
(11) Gilbert Bakers is the Arkansas senator given the highest rating in (meaning he voted more liberal) by a liberal organization in Arkansas of any Republican in the Senate and received a higher score than 41 Representatives including several Democrats by this liberal group. Information taken from this link, page 42 & 43 Citizens First Congress - a Liberal Group http://citizensfirst.org/resources/2009%20Vote%20Guide.pdf
(12) Gilbert never sponsored an illegal alien bill in all the years he has been in the House or Senate or given any real support to the movement against illegal aliens when he was Republican Chair. He was on the committee that tabled Senator Holt's bill in to keep illegal aliens from getting benefits. He did vote against Joyce Elliott's bill to give instate tuition and scholarships to illegal aliens.
(13) Gilbert Baker voted for the Lottery Act HB1002, now Act 606. Lt. Governor Bill Halter was successful in getting a lottery initiative passed. However, Baker said in an interview with Steve Barnes in February, 2009, that, " He [Halter] cast the amendment; he proposed the amendment; and he got it out there, but he wrote it in such a way that legislators are supposed to flesh the thing out. He [Halter] understands that. It is our responsibility to come up with the rules and the regs and hopefully he will have lots of input into that process, but at the end of the day it is the legislature that will vote and the Governor will sign the legislation that puts the process in place. Joyce Elliott was quoted as saying in the same interview, " It it is up to the legislature to get it right and set the rules and all of that." Link to interview with G/Baker, Steve Barnes, and Joyce Elliott, http://www.aetn.org/programs/legislativeupdate/archives/posts/february_13,_2009
Most Arkansans agree that the legislature did not get it right. Rather than write a restrictive bill after the vote on the lottery by the people, the legislature wrote a bill allowing all kinds of expansion of gambling with no or little oversight by the legislature. This 117 page bill was written by Democratic leadership; yet Senator Gilbert did not openly challenge the bill so the people would know what was going on.