The Michigan Department of Transportation is negotiating a lower lease rate for 23 passenger railcars now costing taxpayers $3,000 a day to sit idle. But the length of time the state could have to lease the cars before it can use them has doubled from two years to four years, according to a report sent to state lawmakers.
At the current lease rates, that means MDOT [taxpayers] would have to sink about another $4.4 million into lease charges before it is able to put the cars into service.
The Free Press on Feb. 1 broke the news of the idle railcars, which are intended for two proposed commuter services in southeast Michigan and so far have cost the state [taxpayers] about $12 million in refurbishment, consulting [more graft] and leasing costs since 2010.
A half decade. 5 years and the plan is – there is no plan? Despicable. To say that This Guy is an incompetent boob and complete charlatan is an insult to incompetent boobs and charlatans who are forced to somehow figure out ways to survive in the private sector.
The proponents of Proposal 1 never envisaged the losing position they now occupy two weeks before the vote, so their media shills have resurrected the titillating lies projections of a road builders’ organization called TRIP to bolster their case. Here are the most visceral quotes from Michigan’s two largest newspapers, demonstrating their well-honed propaganda skills:
“By 2025, the share of major roads in poor condition is projected to increase to 53 percent,” TRIP said in its report. “Keeping roads in good condition by performing minor maintenance is far more cost-effective than waiting until roads are in fair or poor condition when it becomes far more costly to make needed repairs.”
“According to TRIP, driving on rough roads costs Michigan motorists a total of $4.8 billion each year in the form of extra vehicle operating costs, representing an average cost of $686 annually per motorist.”
”That’s the conclusion of a report released Monday by TRIP, a Washington-based nonprofit organization that researches, evaluates and distributes information on surface transportation issues.
The Detroit Free Press only identified TRIP as “a national nonprofit transportation research group” in this pivotal story. They were a little more candid in a previous story, so they can’t claim not to know what TRIP is. The Detroit News identification of TRIP was every bit as dishonest. Only our ‘newer’ media is more truthful, if still not entirely accurate:
An inadequate transportation system costs Michigan residents a total of $7.7 billion every year
Driving on rough roads costs Michigan motorists a total of $2.3 billion annually in extra vehicle operating costs
Driving on rough roads costs the average Detroit urban area motorist $536 annually in extra vehicle operating costs
Driving on rough roads costs the average Michigan motorist $357 annually in extra vehicle operating costs
TRIP’s 2015 report on Michigan annual excessive vehicle costs is a $ 2.5 billion (or $ 329 per motorist) increase above their 2014 lies projections. A 109% increase above their 2014 lies. Far beyond any assessment of the 2014 to 2015 deterioration of road & bridge conditions in Michigan – even the totally bogus PASER ratings. Since the $ 2.3 billion (or $ 357 per motorist) 2014 TRIP number didn’t move you to vote for Proposal 1, the new and improved $ 4.8 billion (or $ 686 per motorist) lie is expected to change your mind on Proposal 1. They think you are that dumb.
So is TRIP a “nonprofit transportation research organization”? Sounds like an independent, credible source – right? Do the adjectives ‘nonprofit’ and ‘research’ give you a high level of confidence in their pronouncements? Does ‘organization’ or ‘group’ give you the impression that hundreds of researchers are assessing road conditions across the country? Perhaps you should dig a little deeper than our lazy, lying media scribes.