Arkansans Ponder Upcoming Ballot Issues - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Jonesboro--Melissa Simas reports

Arkansans Ponder Upcoming Ballot Issues

President Bush, John Kerry, John Edwards, and maybe even Ralph Nader won't be the only names on the ballot this year.

Come November Arkansans will be asked to think, and think hard! Ballot issues may be among Arkansas' biggest attraction in the November election.

So far there are 3 constitutional changes proposed by the legislature. One would extend legislative term limits, another would authorize the legislature to meet every year instead of every other year, and a third would raise the statewide minimum property tax for operating public schools from 25 to 28 mills.

Paragould resident Dwayne Harris could vote for a property tax increase.

"I guess as long as the property tax increase is not too dramatic then yes I would be for it," said Harris.

Some issues haven't made it to the ballot yet, but there is belief they will.

Governor Huckabee says he might spearhead a drive for massive school consolidation. And gambling interests may make another gamble with voters.

"It's a good thing, it's a bad thing, you kind of have to weigh the negatives and the positives," said Jonesboro voter Robert Clinton.

A resident of Hot Springs is working on a proposed constitutional amendment that would allow Arkansans to decide if gambling should be legalized in the Natural State. Meanwhile, lobbyists apparently working for the Tunica Gambling Industry in Mississippi are urging voters to say no to this proposal for fear of competition.

"The school systems are having problems, so I think gambling would be good for the State of Arkansas," said Harrisburg voter James Driver.

And will Arkansans say I do to gay marriages?

A proposed constitutional amendment to ban gay marriages could go before the people.

Governor Huckabee is already speaking out on this issue. At a Governor's Convention over the weekend, he said he doesn't think government should be in the bedrooms of American citizens.

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