Answers to Questions Never Asked

What's the most ethical profession?

Pharmacists. A national poll has ranked them first in honesty and ethical standards. It's the ninth consecutive time they've come out ahead of 26 other professions. Runnersup, in order clergy, medical doctors, college teachers, dentists, policemen.

Why do you wear your seatbelt?

Top reasons given, in order, are to avoid injury, beause it's a habit, because it's the law, to avoid a ticket, and because you feel uncomfortable without it.

Why don't you wear your seatbelt?

Because you're only going a short distance, you forgot, you're in a hurry, or because it's uncomfortable.

How much is the proposed increase in the minimum wage in Massachusetts?

It's 5.75 effective next September, $6.25 a year later, and $6.75 by September 2000. The bill was filed in the House earlier this month; no action taken yet.

What was your rating from the Audubon Society this year?

Zero. Don't ask. I might tell you.

How many people are on the waiting list at the Holyoke Soldier's Home?

Some 176.

How much money will the recent tax cut voted in the House save?

It's the biggest tax cut in history. Some $500-million dollars. But the drop in state income tax, from 5.95 percent to 5.7 percent, stilll has to be approved by the Senate and the Governor.

What was the budget surplus last year?

We collected $800-million more in taxes than we budgeted. It'll be more this year.

And, how much is the state budget?

About $19-billion.

Are teenagers good drivers?

Statistically, now. Some 44 percent of 16 year old drivers are involved in a collision before their 17th birthday. Only 5 percent of licensed drivers in Massachusetts are teens, but they account for 11 percent of all traffic deaths. And the leading cause of death for teens is motor vehicle accidents.

What else kills teenagers?

After traffic accidents, with 31 percent, come homicide at 20 percent, suicide and diseases at 14 percent each, injuries at 9 percent, cancer or heart disease at 3 percent, and AIDS, 2 percent.

If we free the pike, who will pay the bills?

One suggestion--not by me!--is to raise the gas tax by 11 cents a gallon.

Who's your new aide?

Tim Cheever, a Westfield native, a Westfield High graduate, and a Holy Cross graduate.

How much money can a lobbyist give you?

Just $200 a year.

How about other people?

The maximum allowed is $500 a year.

What does it cost to run for State Representative, or Senator?

It varies. But, with a primary, it will be about $25,000 in this area. It cost the Beacon Hill rep about $175,000 or more. Senate races? From $70,000 in the "cheapest" area to $125,000 around here. And much more closer to Boston.

What month is this?

It's March. So it's national noodle month. Frozen food month. Peanut month. Music in our schools month. You missed national procrastinaton week, by the way. It was the first week of the month.

Is April any more exciting?

Alcohol awareness month, lawn and garden month, humor month, stress awareness month, amateur radio month. sports eye safety month. I guess not. Unless you love zoo and aquarium month or poetry month.

What's your pick in the men's basketball championship?

Kansas. I don't know why. Maybe Nebraska.

How old is your State Representative?

She's 56. Today. The second day of spring.

All materials copyright 1997 - 2014