Now that the General Assembly is in session all the talk is focused on cutting expenses and finding new sources of revenue. Cutting expenses is a tough proposition because what is waste for one is an important project for another. Such is the world of politics.
Naturally if we could find more revenue, without raising taxes of course, it would go a long way toward righting the ship. To that end, perhaps it is time to think not just out-of-the-box, but around the corner as well.
Since Georgia allows insurance companies to advertise on the side of the road assistance HERO trucks, why not just expand this program?
Let's allow bail bondsman and attorneys to purchase advertising space on the side of police and state trooper cars. It would provide the criminal with a chance for one-stop shopping.
The federal government could even adopt this plan, and for the right price we might see, "This War Sponsored by Halliburton" slapped on the sides of every tank and armored personnel carrier in Afghanistan.
We could put miniature billboards up over every legislator's desk and require lobbyists to rent space and proclaim how they were involved in the legislative process. A few announcements declaring, "This Bill Paid For by Georgia Power" or "This Vote Bought by the Insurance Industry" and we might see some changes in the ethics law."
Let's make every bathroom utilized by elected officials a pay toilet. Considering what most of them are full of and the need to use this particular facility on a regular basis, the fee should result in an economic windfall.
The Georgia Dome in one of the few such facilities that does not have a corporate sponsor. Why not the Delta Dome or Coke Dome? Just think how much money Coke would pony up to make sure it isn't the Pepsi Dome.
Impose a fine on Georgia Power every time the power goes out, regardless of the reasons. If the lines were not on poles and underground where they should be then ice storms, car wrecks and various other disasters would not affect them.
Eventually Georgia Power would get tired of paying the fines and bury the lines, which would also save a lot of tree limbs.
Let's add a special use option to car tags that would allow you to speed. For an extra $100 you could not be ticketed for going five miles per hour over the speed limit. If you want to go faster, the fee goes up. Almost everyone would pay an extra $200 to legally drive 75 mph in a 65 mph zone, knowing they are going to do it anyway.
Make all the interstate highways toll roads. You could get on for free but it costs a dime to get off. This would produce enormous revenue and reduce traffic on what are suppose to be limited access highways.
Charge everyone passing through Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport $1 to leave the terminal. This would produce millions and no one would begrudge a dollar. In fact, a lot of people would probably pay $20 to get out of the place.
Finally, let's require all legislators to sell their blood.
It might not produce that much money but at least they would find out how the rest of us feel.
Ric Latarski is a freelance writer who writes on a variety of topics and can be reached at Rlatarski@aol.com.