Motes senses change in voters

Published 12:00 am Sunday, November 3, 2002

Richard Motes hasn’t kissed any babies since he started campaigning for the state Senate District 23 seat currently held by Hank Sanders. But he has shaken a lot of hands, and he’s also been doing a lot of listening.

And he believes he has detected a growing movement for change among voters.

Motes is the Libertarian Party candidate for District 23. Sanders is a Democrat. There is no Republican candidate.

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An increasing number of District 23 voters, he added, are beginning to feel the same way.

Motes is the owner and operator of Motes Package Store on Dallas Avenue. He cited a 1990 study that estimated Alabama could save $30 million a year by getting out of the retail liquor business. He claimed that Alcoholic Beverage Control Board leases, for example, are often doled out to friends of local legislators at higher-than-market rate prices.

He accused Sanders of having approved bills that diverted hundreds of thousands of dollars from the state’s Education Trust Fund to other projects. &uot;We don’t need to raise taxes,&uot; Motes said. &uot;We just need to make sure the money that’s intended for education stays in education.&uot;

Motes also said he was against raising Alabama’s property taxes, which are among the lowest in the country. He also noted that state revenues were the highest ever for the preceding fiscal year.

Motes said he also questions the selective use of tax incentives to promote economic development.

Motes calls himself &uot;the Golden Rule candidate.&uot;