Do I understand this correctly? We voted for one thing (a high-speed rail initiative), and now they're trying to take that tax money and use it any which way they want, at the last minute, while everyone's looking elsewhere (at the economy)? I'm sure they have reasons, but ... how do I put this.
Why the hell did they bother to have us vote in the first place, if they're just going to change what we "voted for" later?
02.5.09 - 6:33 pm
how the fuck are they going to bring an issue to life, ask us for money to fund it, and then without warning just up and change the initial idea?
Jazzy Phat Nastee
02.5.09 - 6:35 pm
Sorry, I wasn't clear. It's not about the State money for rail. This is about whether any of the upcoming Federal economic stimulus package will contain any money for rail, bike, bridge and other infrastructure... else send it all into highways. The debate is going on in the Federal Senate.
This is an easy opportunity to make your voice heard.
02.5.09 - 6:40 pm
Done and thanks for posting up.
02.5.09 - 6:43 pm
The text (which you can edit before sending) reads like this:
I'm writing to urge you to vote AGAINST the two amendments from Sen. Kit Bond that would strip $2.5 billion from high-speed rail funding and $5.5 billion from innovative multi-modal grants to a highways-only fund in the economic recovery package.
I’m also concerned about the possibility of a rumored amendment by Senator Inhofe directing up to $50 billion from various other funds to a transportation fund with no accountability for how the money is spent and no assurances that it will be used to fix existing infrastructure or fund alternative transportation projects in local communities. Without those assurances and accountability, I urge you to vote NO to any such proposal.
It makes no sense to build a slush fund for highways that would push our country further down a hole of oil dependency and a lagging economy - even as we invest stimulus money elsewhere in the hope of finding a way out. The research shows that investments in repair and maintenance, and in public transportation, yield greater job creation benefits.
I urge you to work with your colleagues to ensure that the recovery bill doesn't become a blank check for new highway construction. Without explicit language prioritizing a fix-it-first approach to infrastructure investment, and by raiding the funds for high-speed rail and the innovative projects we need for the 21st Century, federal funds will be wasted adding new highways to a system that is already crumbling.
Work to prioritize maintenance and repair, ensure that new construction projects help bring our country to a clean energy economy, and create the most job opportunities.
Please work to support a Senate version of the recovery plan that works for all Americans and provides a lasting recovery by voting against the Bond amendments - and any other proposals that would divert money to a highways-only slush fund.
The form figures out who your Federal Senators are and sends them whatever you change the text box to read. I left it alone.
The part I'm interested in is beauro-speak for bike, bus and other infrastructure reading thusly: "..and $5.5 billion from innovative multi-modal grants"
02.5.09 - 6:45 pm
that is a federal amendment.
what we voted for was a state proposition supposedly funded by private investors buying bonds.
either way it's terrible, but i don't think they're directly related.
02.5.09 - 6:51 pm
I got it wrong — this has nothing to do with the CA high speed rail we voted on in November. Sorry for stirring up trouble.
But it still sucks, and I still signed the petition.
Thanks for bringing this to our attention, OverTheHill!
02.5.09 - 7:03 pm