It would seem that Gov. Baldacci is not being true to his calling. Magician seems to be a more fitting occupation, but he did not campaign on promises to use smoke and mirrors to “save” the taxpayers’ money.

I welcome to the club those linked to both prisons and mental health systems, targeted by Baldacci as being at the root of all that is costly. They’ll be in good company with all those in education.

During the “open” discussion last year about school consolidation, it was “The taxpayers have spoken!” and “The time for talk is over!” from the freshly re-elected governor while visiting in Lewiston. It turned out to be a public relations campaign that did not expect opposition or tough questions.

When Baldacci was pressed with questions, such as insurance/worker’s compensation responsibilities, he got frustrated, blurting out those quotes. Yes, taxpayers wanted relief, and still do, but referendums brought to the voters were not acceptable. Up to that point, the Legislature had not voted on a school merger plan, making it a perfect time for discussion.

Unless, of course, talking about the issues would shed light on what the governor and the Legislature want kept in the dark.

The local school superintendent or county sheriff might give an honest assessment of these plans.

Local tax relief will begin when the state funds education at the rate on the law books, while leaving local control in the hands of the locals.

Todd Mogul, Lewiston

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