Opinion

With Kinder at DRA's helm, towns will grow

Saturday, October 28, 2017

If you want to know what a true, honest-to-goodness fiscal conservative looks like, look no farther than former Lt. Gov. Peter Kinder of Cape Girardeau.

It was just two months ago that Kinder was appointed to head the Delta Regional Authority, a federal agency charged with assisting economic development in the Mississippi delta region that stretches from St. Louis to New Orleans.

The agency is targeted with helping to improve the lives of nearly 10 million residents in parts of eight states including southeast Missouri.

Since taking office, Kinder has cut over $500,000 in administrative costs from the agency.

Now consider that for a moment. You have a political appointee whose first challenge was to reduce expenses and allow for more federal tax dollars to actually benefit those it was designed to benefit.

Let's face it. We're used to politicians grabbing more dollars each day to build their power base at the expense of the American taxpayer.

But Kinder is a different animal. He cut expenses when he was in the Missouri Senate and when elected Lt. Gov. He has a long reputation of passionately protecting taxpayers and railing against those politicians who view tax dollars as their personal piggy bank.

When Kinder first took his new post, he learned that administrative costs in his $30 million budget were out of control.

Through retirements and job reductions, he chopped those wasteful expenses almost in half.

And he's not done yet.

Each day he challenges his staff to seek additional reductions. He has eliminated costly chartered air transportation in favor of loading his Ford Explorer with staff and traveling the length of the Mississippi.

Far too many politicians talk a good game when it comes to saving precious tax dollars. But once in office, all of that talk flies out the window.

How utterly refreshing to see someone in political power actually put taxpayers first.

I've spent a lifetime watching politicians promise fiscal conservative views only to abandon those promises once they take power.

Peter Kinder is true to his word and to his conservative roots.

The beneficiaries of that stewardship are the communities up and down the Mississippi who can now be assured that there will be more funding available to help them grow and prosper.

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