Goal has been to stir thinking

I have enjoyed keeping you informed during this legislative session. I hope you found the column to be helpful.

It has not been my goal to win you over?although that would be fine?but that you think about these matters, no matter which side you land on.

I hope you will ponder the issues. There will be many 30-second TV spots you?ll see, as well as post cards you?ll receive, with half-truths and misinformation. My goal is that you not simply take and believe what you?re spoon-fed, like lambs to the slaughter.

I encourage you to dig deeper and ask questions: Why am I being told this? What is the messenger?s real motive? Is there more to this subject than what the messenger is telling me?

If you want more information on a topic, I will be available to talk things through, and I can talk to groups, if desired.

In the meantime, we all should prepare ourselves for the 2010 legislative session. Next January will bring unprecedented budget shortages, again, and we will again need to tighten our belts.

Please keep in mind the state legislature does not set city budgets, county budgets nor school district budgets. Our local governmental units set those, with your encouragement and support, and like the state, they will be short of money, too.

Have you ever attended their budget sessions? It?s quite a process, and all our local governments take their duties seriously. This might be just the time to start reviewing the proposed budgets before they are adopted. I think they would welcome you into the process.

The legislative session will close, Sine Die, on June 4, and we will not reconvene until the second Tuesday in January 2010?unless the governor calls a special session to deal with some issue that cannot wait.

If I have information to report before then, you?ll hear from me right here in the newspaper. If not, you?ll hear from me as the session starts in January.

I hope you?ll stay in touch with me. You can reach me by mail at: 201 Meadow Lane, Marion, KS 66861, or by e-mail at Brookens70@sbcglobal.net as well as by telephone at 800-432-3924 (the Legislative Hotline) or 620-382-2133.

Please be sure to give me a phone number, e-mail address, or regular address where I can contact you in return.

Thank you for the opportunity to serve you. It has been a pleasure.

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