/Retiring Dick Hall and Cecil Brown call for guts, vision from future leaders in farewell speeches

Retiring Dick Hall and Cecil Brown call for guts, vision from future leaders in farewell speeches

Hall, who has 44 years of experience in politics, has served in both the House of Representatives and the Senate, and is currently one of three state transportation commissioners. Hall has publicly lobbyized lawmakers for years for an increase in the state’s fuel tax. This tax has not been adjusted since 1987. Hall stated that “We cannot afford not to fall further behind in economic development.” Hall stated, “And our race can’t be run without a modern multimodal transportation system. It is crucial that we select someone with the vision to see what lies ahead and the political courage to take the lead. Brown, who has 24 years of experience in politics and served as the state’s chief financial officer for four terms. He also serves as one of three commissioners of public services. His focus was on public education and health care. Brown has been vocal in his criticism of Republican leadership over the years, highlighting differences in public education and health care. Brown stated that “we can do better but it will require different leadership at state level.” “We cannot elect the same old people and expect change.” This year’s speeches at the Neshoba Country Fair attract wide attention. Nearly every state news outlet covers them closely. Hall and Brown spoke about the importance the governor’s race but did not endorse a candidate. Hall, who is not dissimilar from the Neshoba speeches that he has given in recent years in this regard, attacked his fellow Republican leaders for failing to adequately address the state’s issues in education, healthcare, and infrastructure. Hall stated that there are still some things that haven’t changed that many of us want to see. “When I first spoke with you 40 years ago the most important issues were education, healthcare, roads and bridges. We are having the same conversation 40 years later.” Hall said, “Hopefully next year our new leaders will create a plan to save our highway system. All plans must be funded. Be assured that the money won’t disappear like politicians think. After all the discussion is over, the final answer will be the exact same as 32 years ago: Change the fuel tax to match the actions of most other states. Brown continued his long-running criticism of Republican leaders for their inequalities in public education and health care. He also spoke out about the contradictions he has seen from conservative leaders. Brown stated that “Letting our roads deteriorate and bridges fall is not conservative.” “Closing driver’s license bureaus does not seem conservative. These politicians will brag about changing laws or cutting regulations. They continue to add new regulations and pass laws we don’t want. That’s not conservative.”