Kwame’s and Bobbie’s ‘Bridge of Bucks’ over Telegraph Road
Now that Michigan voters have mercilessly dispatched Proposal 1 to the garbage can of history, lets talk a bit about the philosophy of a truly effective plan to get Michigan’s roads and bridges up to par. This will provide a proper foundation for developing a ‘Plan B’ which will actually improve Michigan’s roads and bridges, and be acceptable to the population as well.
The underlying premise of Proposal 1 was that the only action required to fix up Michigan’s roads and bridges was injecting big money into the Michigan Transportation Fund. The depraved philosophy of modern American government. Not true and the voters knew it. But Michigan’s power elite believed that opposition could be neutralized by icing a pile of feces with chocolate frosting. Didn’t work despite a lavish $ 10 million effort.
The condition of Michigan’s roads and bridges has only a casual relationship with the funds available in the MTF. In 2014, 11% of MTF funds were siphoned off by various State of Michigan Departments in the form of charge backs for ‘services’ rendered to the MTF, as well as priority grants that have little to do with roads and bridges. Debt service is also a component of this 11%, but that is effectively a payment for previous time preferences of bureaucrats and politicians. Then 9.5% of the remainder was diverted to the Comprehensive Transportation Fund for mass transit. Finally, the MTF was partitioned amongst the State Trunkline Fund (36%), county road agencies (34.6%), and cities (19.8%). In each partition, further funds are siphoned off by charge backs, pension payments, and OPEBs. What’s left for the roads is more a function of politicians and bureaucrats preferences at every level than the amount of money front loaded into the MTF.
So how do we proceed? First develop a philosophy to frame and inform the ‘Plan B’ debate. After the fold.
RightMi.Com editors weigh in on their favorite anti-prop 15-1 articles.
We’ve had plenty to say about proposal 15-1.
In fact, there was so much to be said that we had to create a special category for it, and all things leading up to, and related have been edited by Kevin to reflect their importance to the issue. While the traditional media sources play the equal opportunity game with both proponents and opponents of HR UU (proposal 15-1), it’s been our position to not do so. We have maintained that equal opportunity is already a function of those who would lie about its ‘advantages,’ and it needs no further promotion to make it one of the most dangerous options Michiganians have ever faced at the ballot box.
As we wrap up the arguments with only 2 days left before the polls close, RightMi.com editors thought it important to offer up a few ‘MUST READS!’ As you make a special trip to the polls for an election day that you wouldn’t have if the last legislative session would have done its job we have highlighted the most compelling. The editors have selected 5 or more articles from RightMi.com directly, and one other from anywhere else, traditional or otherwise.
With one week until the special statewide election next Tuesday, the Safe Roads Yes ballot campaign is deploying teams of volunteers to call voters and track down unreturned absentee ballots over the proposed constitutional amendment linked to boosting road funding $1.2 billion annually [No it DOES NOT. That is disinformation, Chad.]. The campaign wouldn’t divulge who will be on the bus. [maybe an AFSCME stooge?]
“I don’t care what side you’re on, everyone agrees Michigan’s roads have gone from bad to worse, and they’ve got to get fixed,” said Roger Martin, spokesman for the Safe Roads Yes campaign.
Wait until you discover zero sales tax dollars goes to roads, and the Education Fund doesn’t mean money going to schools. Enjoy.
Think those additional costs on shipping goods to stores aren’t going to be passed along to you on top of the direct personal hit to the wallet? Better think again about that.
Thanks for voting against this convoluted, Snyder invented perpetual tax hike during the lame duck, Rep. Franz. Also, thanks for being the only Rep. to address this, and the fact there are multiple “Plan B’s” in the works.
And, to you out there who are appalled that Lansing had the audacity to foist this abomination onto us, you better get off your asses and Vote NO on May 5, because the news outlet editorial page propagandists pushing Snyder’s agenda is already ramping up their “it’s all we got” meme as noted here and here.
Remember, requirement is 50% + 1 stinking vote is all it takes to entrench this mess into our constitution.
It’s been a relatively quite week at the gas pump, based on the national average holding at $2.426/gal versus last Monday, but while some motorists are enjoying mild declines, the Great Lakes has taken over what the West Coast saw weeks ago.
Prices are soaring throughout the Great Lakes with big spikes most prevalent in Illinois, where prices have increased an average 29c/gal versus last week. Michigan trails, having risen 25c/gal in a week, while Indiana, Wisconsin, and Ohio have risen 15c, 13c and 12c, respectively. Meanwhile, Kentucky saw an increase of 10c/gal.
A reader sends this juicy morsel from Paul Egan a few days ago.
■ Allow cities whose transit services carry more than 10 million passengers per year, which includes Detroit, to spend up to 20% of its share of Michigan Transportation Fund money on transit, rather than city roads and streets.
■ Add language to allow the Michigan Transportation Fund to receive money from any source, not just fuel taxes and vehicle registration fees.
Can one say Regional Transit Authority? Us well-informed RightMi.com readers sure can. Matter of fact, there is a Tag for that, and we here will allow the missed it by 4% registration fee hike to remain in this Tag, here.
But, back to that RTA… isn’t it nice of the movers and shakers within SEMCOG to provide means of special assessments and property tax hikes by statute for the ongoing bailout of Wayne County? Gee, all of Michigan should thank, slick Rick and Lt. Calley, for that, no?
OABTW, did I happen to mention that I had the opportunity to shake hands with our beloved Republican governor on St. Patty’s Day? True story.
I was at a local convenience store reaching for my wallet and accidentally intercepted Snyder’s hand. Because every president really needs a *Smart Guy™*…
Gov. Rick Snyder joined Wayne County Executive Warren Evans [see here], Washtenaw County Sheriff John Clayton, Brad Williams of the Detroit Regional Chamber [these guys] and others for a morning press conference at a fire station in Dearborn [allah shazam].
Snyder, holding chunks of a broken road and bridge, reinforced the public safety message that the “Safe Roads Yes” campaign is emphasizing ahead of the May 5 vote.
“Can you imagine one of these coming through your windshield?” the governor said, going on to state that 14 percent of the bridges in Metro Detroit have plywood installed beneath them to catch falling concrete. “Your life is in jeopardy.”
You are about to be buried in pseudostatistics and factoids purporting to demonstrate just how bad Michigan roads are. We have already demonstrated that the TRIP vehicle maintenance factoids fabricated by a devious road contractors’ business league are a complete fraud.
Now State of Michigan government entities are unleashing a wave of propaganda intended to drive your vote on Proposal 2015-01. Two State of Michigan government entities have prepared campaign flyers on behalf of Proposal 15-1 using Michigander’s tax dollars: MDoT and the Transportation Asset Research Council (TAMC).
Both MDoT and TAMC have spent years preparing slick pamphlets decrying the sad condition of Michigan’s roads, citing PAvement Surface Evaluation and Rating (PASER) data collected by TAMC with MDoT and local road agency help. These pamphlets claim that 30 – 40 % of Michigan roads are in poor condition. But are they really?