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I read with great interest, Representative Dean Kaufert's laundry list of proposals to reform the budget process. What I would like to know is where these reforms were the last seventeen years that Dean has been in the Assembly? This is not the first time the budget process has broken down while Rep. Kaufert has been in the Assembly. In fact it happened twice, in 1997 and 1999. It wasn't until the fall of those years that the legislature finally approved a budget. Where were these reforms then? Or, where were they just a few years hence when Rep. Kaufert co-chaired the powerful Joint Finance Committee and wielded enormous influence in the budget-writing process? It's easy to stand on the sidelines, knowing your influence has waned, and armchair quarterback problems like the budget process. Rep. Kaufert knows his reforms will go nowhere. He can "champion" reform and pose for holy pictures, knowing full well he can score political points without changing the system that worked so well for him when he has been in power. I guess for Rep. Kaufert he can have his cake and eat it, too.
James Reiland Menasha