Cobb pushes tax plan

Published 12:00 am Monday, August 18, 2003

Cobb of Evergreen, Alabama serves on the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals. She spoke in favor of Riley’s plan Wednesday at the regular weekly meeting of the Demopolis Rotary Club.

Cobb is also the chairman of the board of the Children’s First foundation. Riley’s plan has been endorsed by Children’s First and the majority of children’s advocacy groups in Alabama, she said. All the judges and district attorneys in the state have also endorsed the plan.

Two few citizens in Alabama have made children’s needs a priority, she said. "Two many people in Alabama have tolerated a regressive and immoral taxation system that puts a greater burden on the poor than those of us who are able to pay.

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That distrust of government is pervasive, Cobb said. "Everywhere I go people say ‘I’d give them more if they’d spend it right.’" There is some graft and corruption, she said, but "taxes are what you pay for a civilized society. Those states that have had tax reform and invested in education, they are leaving us behind."

Cobb has been a judge since 1981. She has lived in Conecuh County all her life. As a judge, "it’s the first time that I ever saw domestic violence. Women would come in with their faces completely rearranged begging for charges to be dismissed because there was no child care for their children." They needed their husbands working so there would be child care.

Judges deal with state agencies such public accounts, education, human resources, corrections, probation, mental health and many more, she said. "That’s what we lose sight of in this state….What is government?" It’s librarians, the probate court, state troopers, district attorneys, probation and corrections officers, teachers and principals, she said.

Alabama is 50th in the nation for funding state services. The corrections system, education, care for senior citizens, state troopers, Medicaid and children’s health insurance are all threatened due to the lack of revenue, Cobb said.